The second phase of Grey County’s lawn naturalization project at the administration office in Owen Sound is now complete. On Wednesday, September 13, dozens of volunteers and community members joined County-elected officials and staff at the second planting event which saw a rain garden added to the front of the property. Protecting and expanding natural assets is the first action of Going Green in Grey, the County’s climate change action plan. Naturalization projects and planting events are a great education tool and a way to improve pollinator habits and involve the community in climate action.
“We’re here today to continue our efforts to naturalize the County administration property by turning this outdated, traditional lawn into something much more eco-friendly, vibrant, and beautiful,” said Grey County Warden Brian Milne to open the event.
The new rain garden is located at the corner of 9th Ave E and 6th St. East. Participants planted shrubs such as Buttonbush and Red Osier Dogwood, and perennial plants such as Sweetgrass, Cardinal Flowers, and Black Eyed Susans. This area is located at the base of the hill and receives high amounts of water and moisture run off from the area. The garden will help to naturally transport, filter, and recharge this stormwater runoff.
Next steps in the lawn transformation include planting more trees and creating new pollinator gardens.
The lawn naturalization project is being heavily supported by NeighbourWoods North, a local community volunteer group dedicated to educating the public about the benefits and challenges of urban forestry.
“We’re incredibly thankful for the knowledge, skills, and passion the folks at NeighbourWoods North are contributing to this project,” said Warden Milne.
More information about NeighbourWoods North can be found on their website www.neighbourwoodsnorth.com.
Transforming the lawn is a small but symbolic part of Going Green in Grey. Grey County is leading by example, setting ambitious goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from County operations by 40% by 2030, and reaching net-zero emissions by 2045. Grey County Council approved Going Green in Grey in 2022. The plan was developed in consultation with stakeholders from a variety of sectors and hundreds of residents who shared their time, ideas, and expertise. Implementing nature-based solutions such as rain gardens is a key part of this plan. Going Green in Grey can be viewed in its entirety at www.grey.ca/climate-action.