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Western University

Bee Campus Western University

First University Recognized by Bee City Canada!

Western University has embarked on a five year plan that will create a more pollinator-friendly campus. The Facilities team is stocking garden beds with regional, pollinator favourites, like ironweed, liatris and Joe Pye weed. A medicinal garden has also been planted, with native and other plants being grown and tended to by students in the Indigenous Studies department. Another initiative, the Green Campus Lecture series, provides opportunities for participants to learn about planting and caring for native plants, building bee condos and other ways to help pollinators on campus and in the broader community.

Learn more about our Bee Campus and sustainability initiatives.

October 2023

2023 Renewal

Over the past year we have maintained our regular pollinator-supportive practices such as:

– Planting native and pollinator-friendly plants on campus;
– Invasive species removal, especially focusing on removing buckthorn from natural areas;
– Leaving pollinator plants such as milkweed left to flower, even in areas where they are not intentionally planted, as they are an important source of food for pollinators; and,
– Hospitality Services maintenance of honeybee hives for local honey on campus.

This year we also teamed up with Friends of the Gardens (FOGs), a volunteer group on campus, to support expansion of the pollinator garden that was planted by FOGs volunteers in 2022. The expansion of the pollinator garden also included formalizing the collaboration as a Campus as a Living Lab project, which will enable ongoing learning related to the garden. With faculty experts Dr. Nina Zitani and Dr. Greg Thorn advising on the garden, we have developed a comprehensive pollinator garden plant list, which serves as a resource for anyone interested in starting their own pollinator garden. The Western Community Garden continues to grow food and native plants supporting pollinators. New construction projects have focused on native plantings wherever possible; including the planting of Western’s second rain garden and major construction on University Hill with many native plant additions. To raise awareness and provide education on pollinators we held the second annual native plant giveaway, giving away over 200 native plants during International Pollinator Week. The new Live Stake Planting for Climate Resiliency project was introduced through Campus as a Living Lab as well, and this project included the planting of approximately 75 native tree live stakes along the bank of Medway Creek on campus, as well as 200-300 native shrubs along the riparian zone. This student-led project was funded by a Thinking Globally Acting Locally grant, and was completed in collaboration with community and campus partnerships. Outreach and education on this work are ongoing, including a guest lecture in Western’s new Masters in Health Equity & Sustainability program, and a public presentation at the London Public Library.

October 2023
Bee Campus Western University

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