Photo by Valerie Huff

You may have seen the photos of goats and sheep munching on vetch earlier this summer on the grounds of the Kootenay Gallery.  The goats will be discussed, along with other interesting details in a public talk on August 27 at 2:00 pm.

This talk will highlight the progress on the development of native plant gardens. The gardens are designed to attract and support native pollinators at the Kootenay Gallery.  The space, located behind the gallery, is being transformed into a suite of garden spaces showcasing different approaches to native plant gardening, often called rewilding, and include a butterfly garden, pollinator meadow, and flowering shrub hedgerow. 

More garden space is being added to these gardens this year and will feature interpretive signage following an EcoGarden approach, a program developed by the Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society (CKISS). 

Olga Hallborg, Castlegar Butterflyway Rangers Coordinator and Bren Beckwith, PhD,  Owner, KinSeed Ecologies have been driving forces behind the native plant gardens located on the grounds of the Gallery.

Olga Hallborg will share her inspiration for developing a Castlegar chapter of Butterflyway Rangers and passion for building a public space for native plants and their pollinators. 

Bren Beckwith, the gardens designer, will describe the transformation of the space into pollinator habitat, highlight some of the key plant species in the gardens, and link this project to others in the region, as well as provide information on how people can continue to learn and get involved. 

Most of the plants that are growing in the Kootenay Gallery gardens have been provided by KinSeed Ecologies, Bren’s Nelson-based company that specializes in wild seed and plants that are truly native to the West Kootenay region.

The Kootenay Gallery Native Plant Demonstration Gardens are a proud partnership of the Kootenay Gallery, Castlegar Butterflyway Rangers, Castlegar Communities in Bloom, KinSeed Ecologies, CKISS, and the Kootenay Native Plant Society (KNPS). 

Entry to this event is by donation and is free to Kootenay Gallery members.

This talk is being presented as part of the programming for the exhibition Transcience by Janet Kabatoff. The exhibition opens August 26 at 7:00 pm and continues until October 29.

The Kootenay Gallery and the Native Plant Garden are located at 120 Heritage Way. For more information, contact the Gallery at 250 365 3337, email or search

The Kootenay Gallery wishes to thank the Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance, funded by Columbia Basin Trust for their financial support of this exhibition programming.

Find out about Native Plant Gardens at the Kootenay Gallery

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