Victoria's Local Land Trust

  • About HAT

    We conserve nature on south Vancouver Island

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    Our programs help people understand and care for nature

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  • 14 Aug
    Fieldwork Fridays 11:00 AM to 05:00 PM

     Stewardship Volunteer Crew needed Starting August 7, the Stewardship Team will be operating Fieldwork

  • 15 Aug
    Ice Cream Member's Social 03:00 PM to 06:00 PM

    “HAT Ice Cream Social” at the Gardens at HCP UPDATE: Registration for this event is now full (as

  • 21 Aug
    Fieldwork Fridays 11:00 AM to 05:00 PM

     Stewardship Volunteer Crew needed Starting August 7, the Stewardship Team will be operating Fieldwork

  • 28 Aug
    Fieldwork Fridays 11:00 AM to 05:00 PM

     Stewardship Volunteer Crew needed Starting August 7, the Stewardship Team will be operating Fieldwork

  • 29 Aug
    Habitat Restoration Day in Sooke 10:00 AM to 02:00 PM

    Where:  Sooke, BC -  privately owned conservation land Time:  10-2pm   Please Register Here:  

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Read the Latest News

News & Events

Catch up on everything new with HAT and find out about upcoming workshops, volunteer opportunities, and presentations.


The latest from HAT

Where we post all our updates & events

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Focal Species

Western Screech Owl

Our Western Screech Owls need their habitat protected. Find out how you can help.

Focus on Species

Western Screech Owls

These little owls need your help.

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Where we work

South Vancouver Island

On South Vancouver Island & the Southern Gulf Islands HAT works with people to care for nature..

Mission Area

A Local Land Trust

HAT's work is on south Vancouver Island.

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Adding a water feature to your yard will greatly increase wildlife habitat. Here are a few suggestions to help out with your project.


Depth: By creating varied depth within the pond, you can maximize the wildlife habitat potential. The pond doesn’t need to be any deeper that 0.5 metres, but a deeper section in the middle can help keep water cooler, and create fish habitat if you wish to add fish. Having shallow areas at the edges will allow non-aquatic birds to bathe. By creating shelves to vary the depth, you also create ledges for placing potted aquatic or marginal plants on. Preformed pond liners often have these shelves. Flexible pond liner can be molded around ledges and held in place with stones. Create a trickling sound to attract wildlife by installing a pump. Circulating the water will also prevent mosquitoes from breeding.

Size: The size, or diameter, of your pond is up to you! Wildlife will be attracted to the smallest puddle, so any size pond will “work”. Water will remain cooler in summer in a larger pond.

Planting: Vegetation in and around your pond is essential for maintaining a healthy environment for the wildlife you attract. Try to achieve 60-75% vegetation cover of the waters surface to keep the water cool, and the algae under control. By planting a few woody shrubs around the pond, birds will have perches nearby. Plants that go into a pond are generally placed into three categories: floating, marginal and submerged. Here are a few suggestions of native species for a pond:

Duckings - photo by Deering

Marginal: grow on a ledge near pond’s edge; roots submerged, stems/leaves above water

Cattail                          Typha latifolia (can be aggressive in small ponds)

Wapato                        Sagittaria latifolia

Water plantain                         Alisma plantago-aquatica

Marsh cinquefoil         Potentilla palustris


Submerged: grow in deeper parts of pond; roots and stems submerged, leaves float.

Smartweed                   Polygonum amphibium

Water lily                     Nuphar polysepalum

Water shield                 Brasenia schreberi


Floating: free floating, roots not in soil

This includes plants like duckweed (Lemna minor).


Native plants that grow well around ponds include:

Red osier dogwood      Cornus stolonifera

Blue elderberry            ambucus racemosa

Willow                         Salix spp.

Thimbleberry               Rubus parviflorus

Ocean spray                 Holodiscus discolor

Salmonberry                Rubus spectabalis

Pacific ninebark           Physocarpus capitatus

Hardhack                     Spirea douglasii


Backyard Nature

No matter how much, or how little, space you have, you can make a space for nature

Gardening with Native Plants

Download our brochure here

Become a HAT Habitat Steward

Let others know that you care for nature

Pollinator Stewardship

How to bee kind in your garden

Invasive Plants in Your Garden

Get rid of the worst ones for good

shooting star flower

Top 10 Native Plants

Easy to care for and beautiful too

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Sedum in a container


Native plant can thrive in containers, perfect for decks or small spaces

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Swallowtail Butterfly

Butterfly Gardening

Attract butterflies by planting native species

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Oak Leaves

Oak Leaves

Use your oak leaves to create wildflower spaces

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Amphibians & Roads

Too many amphibians die on roads. Do you know a spot where frogs, toads, or newts are regularly killed on the roadside? Tell us about it!

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