Native plants do so much good for wildlife and the environment... But they can also have positive impacts on people, too.

Continue reading to hear stories of two people’s relationships with native plants from FVC followers Jenna Brotzel and Debra Rickaby.


“I got this app awhile ago where it identifies plants using my phone camera and as someone who suffers from chronic illnesses and clinical depression it gave me a reason to get out of bed and go outside, even if it’s small and insignificant to people who don’t know what it’s like to be bedridden most of the time. It sparked again my love and interest for photography and being out on the land so I submitted whatever native and non-invasive introduced species I’d find in my backyard, the empty lot near my house up the road, and the public walkway at the couqaleetza reservation.

I want to garden with native plants one day but the reason I love ethnobotany and foraging so much is it opens up new opportunities for me both physically and with my diet, I’ve been harvesting fireweed recently to make concentrate candles salves and ivan chai and I’ve liked adding elderflower concentrate to my soft drinks which is really yummy with sprite especially!”

Jenna Brotzel



“Our townhouse complex is about 30 years old and the landscaping is getting tired! So when I saw the ad for the workshop put on with the city , I thought it would be a good idea to replace plants with native plants to help with the environment and keep our native plants relative in landscaping . They have done well and we hope to build another planter area and put some more native plants in that one as well.

I worked at a nursery for several years that had a contract to acquire and grow native plants for the reclamation of the oil sands in Alberta . It was a project that was something I really enjoyed and felt like we were doing something good with something bad.”

– Debra Rickaby

If you want to enjoy nature from your own home and you’re looking to add native plants to your garden, the FVC’s Spring Native Plant Sale is coming March 31st, 2024! Our catalogue can be organized by soil moisture, sun level, pollinator attractors, and more, so that you can pick plants that will suit your garden perfectly.

Online orders close on May 5, 2024 and plants can be picked up from Bradner, Abbotsford on May 11th, 2024.

View the plant catalogue and start shopping here on March 31st!


Do you have a story you’d like to share with the FVC about native plants? We would love to hear from you. Send us an email at .


Thank you Jenna and Debra for sharing your stories with us!