Author Archives: Dave

March 7 2012


In memory of Don Sanford and Jack Whitehead, two people who have worked on water quality of the lake for many years before us.

Present: Audrey Barnes, Pat Carfra, Sherron MacPherson, Woody Thomson, Winona Pugh, Bernie Bowker, Mary Haig-Brown

Regrets: Joanne Delage, Frances Hunter

  1. Adoption of Agenda – carried
  2. Adoption of meeting notes from 4 January, 2012 –  carried
  3. Finances – Sherron

Feb 1, 2012- Bank Balance:                                $1733.78 plus .05 interest

Expense: Plants from Island View Nursery            128.80

Feb 29, 2012 – Bank Balance                             $1605.03

Outstanding cheque Saanich (weed puller)         155.00

To date bank total                                                  $1450.03

  1. Announcements:

a)     Butchart’s Dam – DFO involvement.  Erica Blake is arranging for DFO Engineer and Biologist to visit site once Fish habitat potential is established.  Butchart’s Gardens recently donated $25,000 to Saanich Inlet Protection Society (SIPS) to further their work in Tod Inlet with the Nature Float and Pumpty Dumpty, the sewage pump out boat that services yachts in the Inlet.

b)    Saanich Invasive Species Management Strategy is now ready for comment.  Check on line at Saanich Parks under Natural Areas and follow link.  Comments needed by 16 March.  The strategy is very well thought out.

c)     Saanich  Environmentally Significant Areas Atlas.  Request for potential additions.  Check on line GIS maps to see what is already listed.  It is very interesting to see what is already protected, but spots may have been missed.  This is the work of Adriane Pollard’s department, Environmental Services.

d)    Weed Wrench is now here.  It is strong enough to be borrowed.  Woody has borrowed Audrey’s for a work session at Maltby Lake this weekend.

e)     Article for Prospector- submission date 15 March. Mary to do this explaining what is happening in Whitehead Park and stressing the importance of riparian vegetation.

f)      Angeline Tillmanns’ UVic class field trip – Sunday, 1 April.  The class is a watershed restoration class of about 30 students.  We will start at 8:30 leading them up to Killarney Lake to see headwaters.  This will be followed by a session in Whitehead Park, pulling up sprouting willows, digging up Yellow Flag Iris from a patch back from the lake shore, touring the work site and cutting blackberries.  The class will then go to Tod Creek Flats to discuss plans for that area.

g)     Web Site!!! Winona has figured out how to add the meeting notes to our web site.  We may even figure out how to add pictures and add updates on our projects.  Thank you, Winona.

  1. Projects:

a)     Meadowbrook Reservoir –not likely to happen because of official fear of dams.  DFO has advised us to drop the idea.

b)    Blue green algae monitoring – Pat Carfra has talked to several people around the lake who have observed it.  Pat will devise a reporting sheet with input from Angeline Tillmanns who did her PhD on the subject and from Tricia Demacedo of Saanich Environmental Services.


c)     Whitehead Park – East side:

l)       Marian McCoy has made a plan for us to follow in our restoration of the East side and has given us a great deal of help in following it.  We will attempt to get this on our web site.

ll)     Progress: We have cleared blackberries, spread mulch brought by Saanich Parks on areas with very shallow soil, made the beginning of a path back from the stream, planted sword fern along the path, marked out the preferred route of the ephemeral stream leading to the wetland, planted salmon berry and red osier dogwood stakes on the old path in the hopes that will keep people a bit back from the stream and discourage persistent dumping of yard and garden waste and installed a silt fence to keep runoff carrying clay or mulch from going directly into the stream.  When we have proper riparian vegetation in place the fence will be removed.

lll)   Planting Party on Saturday, March 31, from 1:00-3:00.  We will pull a few more blackberry roots, spread mulch, and plant a selection of native plants.  Please spread the word to friends and neighbours.  Drop by to see what we are up to or better yet come to help and eat cookies.

lV)   Plant tags – we will purchase some metal plant tags from Lee Valley in order to label some native plants so visitors will know what they are looking at.  Mary to buy these.

m)  Whitehead Park – West side – Ideas for summer work pending grants available.  Essentially we want to remove the Yellow Flag Iris along the stream bank and replant with native shrubs.


  1. Grants: Winona

a)     Fido Evergreen  – This is the grant of $2,000 we received in the fall.  We are using it for the East Side restoration.

b)    Saanich Matching Grant We have applied for $2,000 to work on the Yellow Flag Iris removal.   Winona and Mary will defend the application on March 15. Requests for matching grants total $29,224.06.  Saanich has $14,133.55 available.

c)     Scotts Miracle Gro –  Winona has sent in the application.  The grant is for native plant gardens.

5. Heritage Report: Heritage week display at Tia’s Heritage Café was very well received.  Vicki Sanders spoke about retrofitting a heritage house to prevent heat loss.  The information was very interesting, but not many people attended.

The book on Prospect Lake area will be published in May.

  1. Other business: The Prospect Lake/ Tod Creek Action Plan that many of us worked on in 1998-99 has been posted on the PLDCA web site.


The February walk up the trail from West Saanich Road and along Caldicott was very enjoyable.  A beautiful but muddy walk.  We decided not to schedule another walk until the weather is better and work in Whitehad slows down.


Mary will check with Cory Manton about the wording on the signs that are being prepared for our restoration sites.


7. Next meeting: 2 May, 2012. Location: Haig-Brown/ Bowker house at 237 Meadowbrook Road.


January 2012


4 JANUARY, 2012

Present: Bernie Bowker, Pat Carfra, Frances Hunter, Sherron MacPherson, Audrey
Barnes, Woody Thomson, Winona Pugh, Joanne Delage, Mary Haig-Brown.

Remembering Art Dimock. We all fondly remembered a variety of things Art
meant to us. We then wrote a card to Mary Dimock and family. He will be truly
missed but, we agreed, will be looking over our shoulders to see that we do
things carefully. We also discussed the possibility of erecting some sort of
memorial to Art in the Community Hall.

1. Adoption of Agenda
2. Adoption of meeting notes from 1 November, 2011
3. Announcements:

a)VNHS presentation of Green Fire a film about Aldo Leopold Tues ,Jan 10 at 7:00pm in Room 159 of the Fraser Building at UVic.

b)Sierra Club Panel discussion on Sandown Lands – agriculture – Jan 11 at 7:00pm in Presbyterian Church, 9296 East Saanich Rd. Panelists include Elizabeth May, MP, and Bob Maxwell, farmer and chair of Peninsula Agricultural Commission, and a third speaker TBA. This promises to be a very interesting evening with importance for the future of Food Security on Vancouver Island.

c) UVic Student’s Restoration Club presentations Jan 12. 6:30pm Greg Medhurst FTCW are not presenting at this time as the UVic group was over subscribed. This is a chance to hear about various restoration projects going on in the CRD.

d) UVIC’s Neptune project is asking for help to monitor the data that is coming from the fibre-optic cables laid out through the Strait of Georgia. Neptune is the big brother of the Venus Project in Saanich Inlet. Neptune is receiving more data than they can absorb. I don’t know where this will lead, but it is ground/ocean-breaking. Ultimately, I hope our schools will take over and be in a position to run this monitoring program through the students of B.C. In the meantime, if anyone can help, here is a link No donations (except your time) required.

e) PLDCA Lake Access Committee recommendations – to be discussed at the 11 Jan 2011, meeting of PLDCA at the Hall at 7:30. Some suggestions we are delighted to see and a few we needed more information about before understanding their significance.

4. Projects:

a) Whitehead Park: Restoration plan for East side of creek. Marian McCoy has drawn up a draft plan which was enthusiastically endorsed by the membership. Funding is from a Fido-Evergreen grant of $2 000 received in the fall. Sherron is the keeper of the purse. Sherron reports: $2 000 from Fido Evergreen and $250 from Invasive Plant Council of BC has been deposited in Credit Union. Expenses to date: Leather gloves $77.28. Current balance: $2172.72. $400 committed to Melica Environmental for Plan and on-going consultation, $35 for folding table, $53.00 (?) for weed wrench. We plan to buy a few more tools and then spend the rest on plants. Joanne has donated a couple of wheelbarrows. Mary to discuss the plan with Cory Manton. Adriane Pollard suggests we may need to also consult Dwayne Halderson about the ephemeral stream because it is probably partly on road allowance.

Discussion of plans for continued restoration of West side of creek. We need to remove the Yellow Flag Iris which will no doubt spread even further now that the willows have been removed. Because this will involve in-stream work,
we will get help from Sara Stallard who oversaw the removal of the willows. We will apply for a Saanich Matching Grant to fund this work. Adriane Pollard asks that we use Photo Point Monitoring to document this work. Mary to talk with Cory; Winona will work on grant proposal.

b) Eastlake – We had a successful planting party on November 20th. We hope the baby plants thrive under Joanne’s watchful eye. Joanne has been very nurturing. First the plants were dug up by deer (?) who were after the bone meal
we put in the planting holes. Joanne replanted them. Next a broken water line was washing out several of the plants. Joanne has rescued these and will replant when the line is repaired by Saanich. Depending on how much area is disturbed in this process, Joanne may need some help with the nurturing. I need some high res pictures from this event for the Pen Streams blog. Audrey will supply these.

c) Meadowbrook Reservoir – still waiting for DU to visit the site. Mary to e- mail Ducks Unlimited to see when they can come.

4. Grant applications:
a) Saanich Matching Grant for Whitehead west side. Deadline 28 February. See above.
b) Pacific Salmon Foundation for Meadowbrook Reservoir. 15 February. Mary to work on this if DU agrees to hold the Conservation part of the water license.
c) Evergreen- either $2 000 or up to $10 000. We will wait on this until we either get other grants or know we need this one.
d) TD Friends of the Environment – Deadline 15 February, 15 May, 15 Aug. Amount based on application. Usually 500-5 000 range. We agreed to apply for this for further work on West side of Tod Creek in time for
the May 15 deadline.
5. Heritage report: Councillor Vicki Sanders will give a talk on adding energy efficiency to older houses on Sunday Feb 26 at Tia’s Heritage Café.

Group is gathering pictures and stories for including in a book to be published in May.

6. Walks: Sunday 5 February, at 1:00 meet at corner of West Saanich and Wallace Drive to walk up trail to Caldicott and beyond.

7. Other business: A strange algae is blooming in the lake. Winona to consult with Lake Stewardship Society about this.

8. Next meeting: 7 March, 2012, at Audrey Barnes’ house on Kiowa Place.

November 2011


Present: Bernie Bowker, Lori James-Derry, Wil Shulba, Winona Pugh, Joanne Delage, Pat Carfra, Geoff Goodyear, Audrey Barnes, Mary Haig-Brown
Regrets: Frances Hunter, Sherron MacPherson

1. Adoption of Agenda
2. Adoption of meeting notes for September 7, 2011

3. Announcements:
a) All candidates meeting at the Hall Wednesday 9 November.  Municipal government is very important to the work we do.  Please attend and vote.

b) Special tree planting at Whitehead Park on 22 October.  Each year in June Peninsula Streams spends a day with Grade 3 students in Saanich School District.  They use a watershed model to talk about how a watershed functions, and they also talk about the salmon cycle and the importance of trees in that cycle.  They finish by giving each student an alder tree to look after over the summer.  The students bring the tree back in the fall of their grade 4 year and plant it in a suitable spot.  Daniel Sawchyn was the only student from Prospect Lake School to bring his tree back.  Daniel, his parents and several members of FTCW went to Whitehead Park to plant the tree as the first tree in our planting scheme for Whitehead Park.  The tree is near the bridge and has Daniel’s name attached to it.

c) Conservation Connection held 30 Sept.  Winona, Audrey and Mary attended. A very interesting day.  Highlights were a walk with Andy McKinnon and a talk by Bob MacDonald of CBC fame.  We learned lots, chatted with other volunteers and generally had a good time.

d) Pulling Together Training Event held 15 October at Cedar Hill Golf Course.  Winona, Audrey and Mary learned about Saanich’s invasive species policy being developed and much more.  It was another informative day with much participation from knowledgeable speakers and plenty of time for Saanich Parks volunteers to ask questions and compare notes.

e) Bank Account has been set up at Coast Capital Credit Union.  Sherron to be treasurer.  We needed this to look after our funds from the Fido Evergreen grant.

f) UVic Students Restoration Club is having info meetings 17 Nov, 7-9pm  (Social Sciences and Math A104) and 12 Jan, 7-9pm (SSM A110) to showcase restoration projects around town giving opportunities for students to volunteer.  We agreed to make a presentation in January.  Wil will put together a brief power point showing our progress in Whitehead Park.  Winona and Lori will get pictures to him.  A couple of volunteers will make the presentation.

4. Updates:
a)Tod Creek Flats – Wil will work on a Hydrological Survey between his paying jobs.  We need a base line study so we can monitor the effects of changes.  He will study the hydrology (surface and ground water entering and leaving the site and its effects on the ditch that is the current site of Tod Creek).   Wil and Mary will meet on Thursday to discuss the details.

b) Meadowbrook Reservoir – Ducks Unlimited will be visiting this month.  They may hold the conservation portion of the water license.  If so we will reapply to PSF for funding for work in August/September.

c) Eastlake – A Planting Party will be held Sunday, November 20 from 1:00-3:00 pm.   Joanne has been keeping the area weeded and has removed lots of ivy roots.  She said there has been more activity there since we removed the ivy last winter.  Unfortunately some young people pruned some cedars and removed small trees near the lake in order to make a bigger sitting area.  We hope the plantings will make the area a little less obvious and perhaps discourage this kind of vandalism.  Cory Manton is ordering 75 salal and 75 sword ferns in 10 cm pots to be planted in the upper area.  We will work on more invasive removal as well as plant on the 20th.  Lori will email or phone the people who worked on the last session.  Please spread the word and come if you can.  Mary will let Cory know the date and make sure the plants are on hand.

d) Whitehead Park – Grant from Fido-Evergreen of $2,000 received.  A draft tool wish list has been drawn up.  It was suggested we try to get some of these tools from Barkely exchange or other second hand sources.  Lori is going to the states soon and will look into getting a root puller only available there.  We have removed some blackberries and spread mulch.  We have much more to do so feel free to join us on Monday mornings at 9:30.  On 25 Oct. we met with Cory Manton and Rob Hughes on site to discuss our work.  We will work on the blackberries through the winter and plan to plant in the early spring.

e) Tricia Demacedo of Saanich Environmental Services has prepared an excellent list of Best Management Practices (BMP) for working near streams and in Riparian areas.  (see attachment).

f) Prospect Lake School – needs more attention than we can give it.  Mary talked to Kelly about this and today two members saw work being done in the garden by staff and students.

5. Heritage Society Report – They have a small grant and will work with “Blurb Self Publishing,” an internet site, to produce a small coffee table book as a fund raiser for a larger book.  This will require more interviews and to that end members are learning techniques to encourage story telling.

6. Lake Stewardship Report – Winona and Woody attended a Lake Stewardship training which they found most useful.  Winona is building on the data collected over the years by Art Dimock.

7. Walks or paddles – Since we are busy with blackberries and presentations and the work party we decided to wait until the new year before planning any outings.

8. Butchart’s dam and the fish ladder.  No progress seems to have been made on this issue.  Mary will talk to Erica Blake of DFO who is the person Butcharts talk to on this issue.

9. Next Meeting – 4 January 2012 at Carfras, 181 Goward Road.