Eco-tour of the Garden City Lands

 Update after July 27 eco-tour: Once again, all participants found the eco-tour to be informative and fun. The group spanned every age group from teens and twenties to sixties and seventies.
Michael Wolfe leading the June 5 eco-tour of the Garden City Lands.

Update, June 6 (shown above): Despite unseasonably cold and wet weather, all seventeen participants in the June 5 eco-tour described in this post found it informative and fun and recommended participating in future tours. All agreed that they recommend the tour to future participants. Here’s one response:

I just wanted to send a quick note to let you know how much I enjoyed last night’s eco-tour of the Garden City Lands. It was fascinating and wonderful to actually get out and walk around in this much-disputed area. Please let me know if you do additional tours in the different seasons.

Celebrate World Environment Day on Thursday, June 5, 2008, with a free eco-tour of the Garden City Lands, starting at 7:10 p.m.

Appreciate the lands in new ways with expert guide Michael Wolfe. A conservation biologist and educator, Michael has loved and studied the Garden City Lands all his life. He is also the people’s choice for Best Future Mayor of Richmond, according to the Richmond Review’s recent 2008 Best of Richmond Awards.   

You are welcome to join the eco-tour if you’re interested in saving the Garden City Lands as green space. To ensure a place in the group, register ASAP by leaving your name at

The tour group will gather at 7 p.m. at the main entrance to the Garden City Lands on the east side of Garden City Road. It’s just south of Lansdowne Road and north of Westminster Highway.

Here’s what Michael Wolfe has said about the event:

Celebrate World Environment Day! The worldwide awareness is made up of awareness of local environments. Here and now in Richmond, that means awareness of the Garden City Lands, including part of the nearly lost Lulu Island Bog.

Venturing onto the lands, we will see species that have been here since the last Ice Age, species like sphagnum moss, bog laurel, bog rosemary, Labrador tea, shore pines, and the native cranberry and blueberry. Many of these plants are found only in the boglands.

The animal life we may see includes coyotes, great blue herons, red-winged blackbirds, and ring-necked plovers.

On our tour, we will see the ecosystem services that the bog provides: water filtration, carbon storage, habitat for native wildlife including important pollinators, and much more. We will tread lightly on the peat soils of this magical place, a home for wild species, yours to witness and treasure.

To see photos of the Garden City Lands, you could start with the banner photos on most of the pages at the Garden City Lands website. For more of a tour preview, join the Garden City Lands Facebook group, where there are about seventy photos.

 A few notes

Wear water-resistant boots such as old hiking boots or gumboots. As a registrant, you’ll likely receive a few tips like this with your reminder message.
  • There’s inexpensive parking at nearby Kwantlen University College (Kwantlen Road at Lansdowne Road). This map shows Kwantlen and the main entrance to the Garden City Lands. You can cross Garden City Road with the traffic light at the Lansdowne corner and then walk south about a hundred metres. 
    • The tour typically takes between an hour and ninety minutes. People who prefer to spend less time can break off sooner without offending anyone.
    • Wear clothing that can handle a shower if need be – and maybe a bit of mud. (The evening forecast is “cloudy with showers,” with just 1-3 mm of moisture.)
    • Mandarin and Cantonese translation are available.

    Reminder: To sign up for the next tour, send a short email to




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