Koerner Gardens

Koerner Gardens at Evergreen Brick Works is where connections thrive. Nestled within our urban oasis, Koerner Gardens is more than just a revitalized space – it fosters the bond between people, communities and nature.

 

One of the most popular public spaces at the Brick Works, Koerner Gardens is a thriving green space open for the enjoyment of all visitors, and a hub for community events, recreational activities, public art projects and more.

 

The revitalization of Koerner Gardens was generously supported by Beanfield, who believe that community is one of humanity’s most powerful inventions.

In collaboration with Trophic Design and our community partners, the reimagined Koerner Gardens incorporates sustainable and regenerative landscape design practices and places community at the centre. Through redesigning these spaces with a focus on climate resilience and community, we are creating a place that is for the enjoyment of all and has everyone’s future in mind.

 

The features of the garden include a striking Corten steel art wall laser engraved and lit with constellation patterns, tiered stone seating and thoughtful native plant landscaping.

 

The ecology of Koerner Gardens centers around the iconic white pines growing through the roof girders, exemplifying the interplay of nature and industrial history at the Brick Works. The trees are interplanted with a carpet of native plants which appreciate the shady and acidic environment and connect to the long history of human activity in the Don Valley.

 

Plant species include:

 

• Bearberry/kinnickinnick (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi): This low-growing native groundcover is helping to stabilize the steep slopes of our largest mound garden. In the spring bearberry produces small clusters of pink to white flowers, and in the summer these turn into bright red berries that are beloved by birds. This plant is often added to tobacco and used as sacred smoke in Indigenous ceremony.

 

• Bunchberry (Cornus canadensis): Bunchberry, or Creeping Dogwood, is the lowest growing of the dogwood family. This native woodland ground cover grows under trees and shrubs and produces a beautiful large white flower in the early summer.

 

• Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens): This rhizomatic, native groundcover loves shady, acidic soils like the ones provided by our evergreen mound gardens. It is also the original source of wintergreen flavouring, before it was produced synthetically.

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