Wisdom Among Wild Fruits

Here Connell takes a comprehensive look at the wild fruits – and especially the wild berries – of the Southern Vancouver Island. “Berrying in the hills is a psychological phenomenon, an expression of country love and the desire to get back to old Mother Earth and her direct products.” From the Victoria Daily Colonist, NovemberContinue reading “Wisdom Among Wild Fruits”

These Enchanted Woods

The tragedy of a clear-cut and burned out forest is contrasted with the healthy ecology of a unique bog forest and Garry oak woodland on the outskirts of town. From the Victoria Daily Colonist, October 16th, 1938- The charm of the forest has been sung by the poets and felt by most of us. FromContinue reading “These Enchanted Woods”

The Valley of Bowker Creek

Connell takes a deep dive into geological time through an examination of the landscape and stratigraphy of the Bowker Creek/Thaywun Valley. From the Victoria Daily Colonist, October 23rd, 1938- In and around Victoria there are areas of low ground usually sloping gently towards the sea and never at any great height above it. Before modernContinue reading “The Valley of Bowker Creek”

Old Road and Veteran Oak

Connell ventures to the southern slopes of Pkols/Mount Douglas to see an ancient oak tree. He observes other flora and fauna along the way while sharing interesting pieces of European folklore associated with some of the introduced species he encounters. From the Victoria Daily Colonist, October 30th, 1938- October days are the best of allContinue reading “Old Road and Veteran Oak”

Some Town Trees

Here Connell visits some old and interesting specimen trees, both native and exotic species, that were planted by early settlers in Victoria and muses over their cultural and historic associations. From the Victoria Colonist, November 6th, 1938- I respect the lover of trees, but for the planter of them I have a great admiration. ThirtyContinue reading “Some Town Trees”

On Willows Prairie

Connell takes us along on a ramble across a remnant of the swampy grasslands and oak prairies that once covered much of the Victoria region. From the Victoria Daily Colonist, Oct. 3rd, 1937- The other morning I took a stroll through one of the still vacant sections of Victoria’s old prairie. It lies north ofContinue reading “On Willows Prairie”

Along Country Roads by Mount Tolmie

Here Connell ventures up and over Mount Tolmie and down onto the eastern end of Cedar Hill Cross Road, where the University of Victoria is today. He examines the botany of forest, field and hedge as well as some remnants of human history along the way. From the Victoria Colonist, September 17th, 1939- From theContinue reading “Along Country Roads by Mount Tolmie”

Some August Gleanings

Connell returns to the Uplands in late summer noting some distinctive characteristics of the season, as well as recalling a First Nations historical site at Loon Bay. From the Victoria Colonist, August 27th, 1939- How swiftly the hot days transport us into the beginnings of autumn. Already the stubble fields have turned the valley slopesContinue reading “Some August Gleanings”

Changed and Changing Countryside

Connell takes a nostalgic look back at the built and natural landscapes of Victoria and Saanich as they were during his first years on the West Coast in the early 1900s, with a focus on the region around Cedar Hill Cross Road and the Shelbourne Valley. From the Victoria Colonist, August 20th, 1939- “Believe itContinue reading “Changed and Changing Countryside”

Wild Things at Beacon Hill

Connell takes a summertime ramble to Meeqan observing some of the natural and human history of the park. From the Victoria Colonist, July 4th, 1943- Fortunately there still remains in Beacon Hill Park a large part of the original tract of land more or less as it was a century ago. The fine old oaksContinue reading “Wild Things at Beacon Hill”