Meeting Animals

Mom with her new friend, a resident parrot at Victoria Butterfly Gardens in British Columbia.

You may not be surprised to hear that, though I adore plants, I garden primarily for animals and the life they bring to a place. Growing up, I was taught by my mother to treat animals gently and respectfully, whether they are pets or wild creatures.

Mom and I recently journeyed to Victoria, British Columbia, to take a class on video storytelling. Here is my effort for the class. Partly a travelogue and partly a continuing response to Susan Harris’ thought-provoking ideas about using video to promote public gardens, this snippet tells the story of our meeting a charismatic Canadian bird.

For some, gardens are all about the plants. For others, they are more about artistic design of space. For me, a key reason to garden is to enable and encourage meetings between people and other animals.




  1. Ah…how awesome! We are kindred spirits. Plants are wonderful, but the wildlife they invite are even more wonderful! I just finished a blog post yesterday about watching the birds in my new butterfly garden. I could sit all day and watch their frolicking in the birdbath. Thanks for sharing! ~Julie

  2. How sweet! On our organic farm we have free ranging chickens who LOVE all things lettuce, kale, chard, strawberries, blackberries–more–so I keep one bed unprotected just for them. It’s a win-win throughout the veggie garden. They love the bugs as much as the greens and their eggs truly taste amazing.

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