Lanark County is launching a new roadside restoration pilot project in partnership with the Canadian Wildlife Federation (CWF) to create critical pollinator habitat for species at risk including Monarch butterflies.
“The long-term goal of Lanark County’s Vegetation Management Plan is to restore pollinator habitat on roadsides which reduces maintenance costs, improves pollinator habitat, and stores more carbon in the soil with native plants,” said Michelle Vala, Climate Environmental Coordinator for Lanark County.
Proper site preparation is critical to ensure the long-term success of the project, which will establish native meadow habitat over the next three years, Vala said.
- The site is on CR21 Elm Grove Road between Sunset Drive and Hughes Road in Lanark County, Eastern Ontario.
- An area about 350m long will be seeded with a custom native seed mix with native pollinator plant species and grasses.
- The seed mix will include a cover crop to give the native seed time to establish in the first year.
- Site preparation begins in May with a combination of herbicide, tilling, and rolling to compact soil based on advice from restoration experts.
- Once the native meadow community establishes, it will be able to help fight invasion of invasive species like wild parsnip.
This project is part of an ongoing partnership between Lanark County and the Canadian Wildlife Federation to restore and improve pollinator habitat on roadways in Lanark County.
The Canadian Wildlife Federation is building a national network of Rights-of-Way managers interested in creating pollinator habitat on roadsides. This includes municipalities, utility companies, solar farm operators, and pipeline companies.
“Canadians want to be part of pollinator recovery efforts, and rights-of-way present fabulous opportunities to restore meadow habitat,” said Carolyn Callaghan, CWF senior conservation biologist, terrestrial wildlife.
Lanark County is in the breeding range and along the migratory route of the iconic Monarch butterfly.
For more information, to join the network or to download a best practices guide for Ontario, visit HelpThePollinators.ca.
About the Canadian Wildlife Federation
The Canadian Wildlife Federation is a national, not-for-profit charitable organization dedicated to fostering awareness and appreciation of our natural world. By spreading knowledge of human impacts on the environment, carrying out research, developing and delivering education programs, promoting the sustainable use of natural resources, recommending changes to policy and co-operating with like-minded partners, CWF encourages a future in which Canadians can live in harmony with nature. For more information visit CanadianWildlifeFederation.ca.