Text and Photo submitted by Bengül Kurtar
Janet and I bicycled this time to Camosun Bog to see the Bog Laurels (Kalmia polifolia), and other bog plants, and birds and the bees. We came across a field of the Bog Laurels. I had visited the park last year at the end of April, they weren’t blooming like this year.
You can see more of my photos from last Thursday HERE
Bog Laurel is one of my favourite wild flowers in BC. First time I saw them was in May 2009, when we walked on the Shorepine Bog trail in Tofino.
Camosun bog is a rare and beautiful ecosystem located within Pacific Spirit Park and was nearly lost due to damaging human activity. Since 1995 the Camosun Bog Restoration Group has been working hard to restore the bog and to reverse the damage.
As per the Camosun Bog Restoration Group; “12, 000 years ago, the area we now call Vancouver, B.C was ice covered. When the ice receded, 10 000 years ago, it left behind a scarred landscape. A small depression left by the ice became a lake surrounded by sedges and cattails. 5000 to 2000 years ago, the lake became a swamp. Dead plants from the swamp blocked the sources of fresh water and sediment. As the dead plants decayed, they used up available oxygen. 2000 years ago, conditions became perfect for a bog…..
It was the development of a city that nearly destroyed the bog. Drains installed in 1929 reduced the water levels, destroying the Sphagnum moss.
In 1972, construction fill was dumped onto the bog site, further exacerbating a bad situation. The bog was nearly gone. In 1992, a group of concerned neighbours and researchers formed the Camosun Bog Restoration Group (the “Crazy Boggers”). Dr. Bert Brink was one of the concerned citizen around that time. You can read more about the history of Camosun Bog from HERE.