Posts Tagged ‘pacific spirit park’


Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum pedatum) in a container in our back garden. Canary Island Ivy (Hedera Canariensis) leaf peeking through the fern fronds.

I’m more relaxed about gardening than I used to be, and am enjoying letting Mother Nature have her way. She creates beauty at every turn, with little interference from me! Green is her colour of preference, which is obvious to anyone who walks through a forest.

These days, green is my favourite colour in the garden, and elsewhere. Being a cool colour, it provides a sense of calm and peacefulness, similar to the effect of blue. Because green plants appear to be in the background, they add a feeling of spaciousness to garden beds. For me, green represents Nature at its best, and is the colour of life and hopefulness. The following photographs were taken while we were on a walk in Pacific Spirit Park, in July, 2019, on one of the many beautiful trails there. Each photograph shows only native plants, which have grown here on the southwest coast of Canada for many centuries.


Salal (Gaultheria shallon)

***Green is the prime colour of the world, and that from which its loveliness arises.

                                                               —Pedro Calderon de la Barca


Red Huckleberry (Vaccinium parvifolium)

No white nor red was ever seen

So amorous as this lovely green.

—Andrew Marvell


Vine Maple (Acer circinatum) trees among the Douglas Firs ((Pseudotsuga menziesii)

This is second-growth forest, re-planted in the early 1900’s, following intensive logging. The original evergreen trees were massive giants, and a few of their trunks are still visible throughout the park. They were mainly Western Red Cedars and Douglas Firs.

It was with awe

That I beheld

Fresh leaves, green leaves

Bright in the sun.



Moss on Douglas Fir bark

***If there is a future, it will be Green.

—Petra Kelly

By “Green”, I think that Petra Kelly means that humanity will be using renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind, and other clean methods which do not emit carbon, and will thus help to slow down the rate of global warming and climate change.


Vine Maples and Western Hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla) tree.

***A forest is green for a reason.

—Anthony T. Hincks


Western Sword Fern (Polystichum munitum) and Salal

***Green is a soothing colour, isn’t it?

—Jack Thorne

Here’s a little song some of you may remember, from Sesame Street:

It’s Not Easy Being Green (Kermit’s Song). Kermit is a frog, of course! 🙂


























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Acer rubrum (Red Maple)

Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower.

—Albert Camus (French novelist, essayist & playwright, 1913-1960)


Beach Asters

These bright little yellow blooms surprised me one day at the beach. I don’t know how they managed to settle in beside a log, in the sandy soil, far from any garden. Perhaps the wind or a bird carried a seed head to this unlikely spot. I wish I knew the name of this delightful plant! For now, I call them “Beach Asters”. They’re most likely a plant native to our area.


As seen from the beach, the ever-growing Vancouver city skyline. The shift in seasons could be felt in the air on this September day.


Ceratostigma plumbaginoides (Chinese Plumbago or Leadwort)

An all-time favourite of mine. Who could ask for more? Green leaves change to burgundy, and blue flowers appear in September.


Violas…I love them, and plant them every fall. They bloom all through winter, and well into spring, which is a treat! Cheerful little flowers!


This year’s leaf colours were magnificent! Here are some from Acer rubrum (Red Maple), Acer palmatum (Japanese Maple), and Acer macrophyllum (Broad Leaf Maple). So Canadian!


Hallowe’en 2018 was a quiet one in our neighbourhood, but it’s always fun!


Woven twig star in a neighbour’s garden. Can Christmas be far off?


Acer macrophyllum (Broadleaf Maple, Broad Leaf Maple, Bigleaf Maple, Big-Leaf Maple)

This is a venerable old tree, managing to survive so far on a boulevard. It’s a tree which is native to this part of the world, which makes it an especially important one to protect as part of the inter-connected biosphere (what’s left of it!) Licorice ferns grow from the mossy crevices of its branches, and mosses cling to its trunk.



Betula (Birch)

A Birch tree at dusk, already ‘bereft’ of all its leaves. This is looking west, towards Pacific Spirit Park and the UBC golf course, where the Pacific Tree Frogs will be chorusing, come April. If you’d like to, you can see my previous post on Pacific Tree Frogs, also known as Pacific Chorus Frogs: https://joiedusoleil.wordpress.com/2015/06/02/urban-trekking-2-frog-songs/

A snippet of the frogs’ chorusing is included in the above link. It’s rare, these days, to hear frog songs in the city!















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220px-Pacific_Tree_Frog_(Pseudacris_regilla)_3 400px-Pacifictreefrog2kjfmartin

We are fortunate to be able to hear the Spring-time chorus of frogs from our home every April and May. It’s magical! And it is becoming more rare, as many species of amphibians world-wide are now endangered. Due to habitat loss, covering over of wetlands, possibly also to climate change, and for other, unknown reasons, frogs are vanishing.

On May 2nd of this year, with an almost full moon shining above us, we followed the lovely sound of the frog songs to their source, near Pacific Spirit Park. These are PACIFIC CHORUS FROGS, Pseudacris regilla, also known as PACIFIC TREE FROGS. Apparently they are not considered at risk or threatened here in B.C. But with the rapid “development” going on in our area, many of the choruses have gone quiet.

Last year, I watched as a back-hoe destroyed a boggy, treed piece of land at UBC, readying it for a condo development. I had heard frogs there in the past.

What can we do to help them? Here are a few suggestions I received from Monica M. Pearson, R.P. Bio, of Balance Ecological:

1.  Documentation: In B.C., the Frog Watch program gives B.C. residents an opportunity to get their sightings into the Provincial databases. Let them know when and where you hear frogs.


2.  Retain or restore frog habitat: frogs need ponds to breed in and plants to hide in.

3.  Our own yards can be maintained as habitat: maintain a diversity of plants at a diversity of scale. Fishless water features and ponds will help.

4.  Encourage politicians to support the creation of frog habitats in new developments.

5.  “Amphibian Crossings” can be built on roads known to be frog migration routes when new roads go in.

Other websites to check out:




I hope you will enjoy listening to the following songs of the Pacific Chorus Frogs (Pseudacris regilla), also known as Pacific Tree Frogs, which we recorded on the 2nd of May, 2015, here in Vancouver.


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Overlooking the bog.

Overlooking the bog.

Camosun Bog lies within Pacific Spirit Park on the west side of Vancouver, B.C., Canada. It is a memento of the last ice age, a rare ecosystem, a fragile and beautiful urban wilderness. Human development in and around the area nearly destroyed the bog, until a group of concerned local nature lovers joined forces to save it, starting in the early 1990’s.

The above is taken from the website: http://www.camosunbog.org .

Today’s Quotation:

Hope and the future for me are not in lawns and cultivated fields, not in towns and cities, but in the impervious and quaking swamps.

-Henry David Thoreau

Camosun Bog Raised Walkway

Camosun Bog Raised Walkway

Bog Writeup

Bog Writeup

Sphagnum Moss

Sphagnum Moss

Bog Plants

Bog Plants

Pond with Mallard Duck and Water lily pads.

Pond with Mallard Duck and Water lily pads.

Raised walkway to protect fragile bog plants.

Raised walkway to protect fragile bog plants.

Wild Blueberries for birds and other critters.

Wild Blueberries for birds and other critters.

Skunk Cabbage

Skunk Cabbage

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Today’s Quotation:

Between me and the shadow that is under the cedars, gnats dance in the sun.

-Thomas Merton

Loggers' notches in huge tree...early 1900s

Loggers’ notches in huge tree…early 1900s.

Lichen and mosses on ancient cedar tree trunk.

Lichen and mosses on ancient cedar tree trunk.

Skunk cabbages.

Skunk cabbages.

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