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Gardens of Hope

A garden growing in support of others needing respite and hope

Hummingbirds In Sight

Posted on May 28, 2014 by Ron Arvidson


Our spring migration is well underway and Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are arriving on the Island.  For me the Hummingbirds arrive shortly after the first flowers begin to bloom.  I usually look for them when I see the first forsythia start to bloom.  Another notice for me to start to look for them is shortly after the Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers have arrived.  While Hummingbirds are dependent on nectar from flower as a source of food, in spring, when flowers are fewer, they will also access the Sapsucker wells for sap.  The Sapsucker wells also attract insects which provide food for Hummingbirds as well as other small birds like Kinglets, Chickadees and Warblers.

If you are planning to attract Hummingbirds to your yard, you can place feeders strategically throughout your yard and flower beds.  There are a variety of Hummingbird feeders available from any number of stores and shops.  I prefer those that do not hold to much so that they can be refreshed regularly and are easy to clean.  For the first couple of feedings, I usually put out a mix that is three parts water to one part white sugar.  I feel that this with the extra sugar it will attract the hummers to stay around as well as provide extra energy to withstand the cooler nights.  Once feeding is established, I change to the regular syrup of  four parts water to one part water.  There is no need to add any source of red dye to your syrup as the birds are attracted by the color of the feeder and there are some who feel that the dyes may harm the Hummingbirds

You also should provide Hummingbirds with a variety of flowers in your yard if you wish to have them stay around for the summer.  They tend to be attracted to the tubular flowers from Daffodils, Honeysuckle and Morning Glory.  A variety of trees and shrubs will provide roosts, protection and nest areas.  Hummingbirds usually choose a protected sight in a forked brand to build a nest of moss, lichen and spider silk as well as other fine materials.  The nest are around four to five centimetres in diameter and will expand to accommodate the growing chicks.

Hummingbirds are a delight to have around throughout the season and are very entertaining to watch.  Sometimes the aerobatics becomes quite intense as the young fledge and there can be some aggressive displays.  As fall approaches, they will migrate when the time is right.   However, sometimes it is good to leave your feeders out as during the fall Hummingbirds from areas west of ours sometimes stray outside their normal range and you may get to see a rarity.

Photos and Text by R.E.Arvidson


Welcome Back Birds

Posted on May 11, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton
It's spring! Yeah! Everyone has a first sign they look for to tell them that spring has finally arrived. For me it's when I hear the White-throated Sparrow. I know they'll soon be skitting around under my bird feeders looking to clean up any stray seeds they find. They do that because there's a shortage of insects and berries at this time of year. Soon they'll be looking for a suitable place to nest which often is under my thick shrubs unless the cat sees what they're up to, and in that case they move to higher ground.
White-throated Sparrows are one of the prettier Sparrows with their bright white throat and yellow lores. Some have white stripes on their head and some have a more buff coloured stripe. Both equally handsome.

The Gardens of Hope

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton
Located in the heart of New Glasgow, Prince Edward Island, the Gardens of Hope are 12 acres of natural splendour shaped from the hills and shoreline along the River Clyde. The gardens contain an assortment of pathways, outlooks and structures designed to capture the Island’s natural artistry, serenity and glorious country views. This awe-inspiring setting provides a wonderful opportunity for individuals to reflect and rejuvenate their spirit and souls in an environment of natural harmony and tranquility.
Established in 2005, the Gardens of Hope is spread over 12 acres of awe-inspiring natural beauty, the likes of which New Glasgow is so well-known for. With the River Clyde serving as a scenic backdrop, the Gardens have some of nature’s most beautiful elements for visitors to enjoy and receive solace from. There are more than 400 different plants and flowers in the Gardens, making each month’s blooming something to look forward to as the colours come to life. In the orchard, apple blossoms and cherry blossoms offer a delicate sense of reflection, and the sea of blue irises by the riverbank can only be described as relaxing. A section called Eagle’s View is one of several seating areas in the Garden, and it is not uncommon for visitors to see an eagle or two taking flight. Besides eagles and Canada geese, the Gardens are home to many more birds. Visiting bird watchers have been known to have been pleasantly surprised by the wide variety they come across in the Gardens.
You are invited to visit this unique garden sanctuary, enjoy some of the most spectacular views on Prince Edward Island and let the sights and sounds of nature be sources of peace, refreshment and inspiration.
Within the Gardens of Hope, a Respite Cottage has been built as a place of rest for either individuals, families, or caregivers coping with serious life threatening illnesses. It is also made available to caregivers and those who are ministering to others who themselves are experiencing compassion fatigue. The Gardens of Hope Respite Cottage is available at no cost for those who find themselves in need.
If you are interested in being part of our volunteers, supporting our efforts financially, or learning more about Gardens of Hope, drop us an email at: 

The Butterfly House

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bruce MacNaughton

Butterfly House

Located within the Gardens of Hope is a wonderful little greenhouse that is home to imported tropical butterflies from Costa Rica from June to September. There is a small admission charge that goes to support the Butterfly House operations and The Respite Cottage.

We strive to entertain and delight visitors with an array of imported tropical butterflies through outreach, collaboration and education.


Butterfly House Hours