Pollinators on orange milkweed


Mickey DiFruscio & Family Legacy Pollinator Project Planting at Fairview Cemetery

The City of Niagara Falls, in partnership with the Park in the City Committee, the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA), and with the help of volunteers, will establish a 200 sq. m pollinator garden along the west fence line at Fairview Cemetery, in honour of the volunteer work of Domenic ‘Mickey’ DiFruscio and his family on Wednesday, September 16.   

Mickey DiFruscio is a former NPCA Board Member, who served from 1993 to 2019, dedicating 25 years to improving the Niagara Peninsula watershed. He has always been a strong advocate for the protection and restoration of habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators. Mickey celebrated his 94th birthday on September 8.

This garden is one of several pollinator gardens in Mickey’s honour that will be installed by the NPCA in collaboration with community partners and volunteers across the watershed.  Since 2017, the NPCA has established gardens at Mel Swart Park Lake Gibson Conservation Park in Thorold, Morgan’s Point Conservation Area in Wainfleet and Virgil Dam Conservation Area in Niagara-on-the-Lake. 

All Mickey DiFruscio and Family Legacy Pollinator Gardens contain only native species of plants that serve as either host or nectar sources for native pollinator species. The garden at Fairview will complement an existing two-acre naturalized Willow’s Rest, which is a green burial section within the cemetery. The NPCA encourages everyone to incorporate native plants into public and private green spaces, including cemeteries, golf courses, parks and road allowances where appropriate. Pollinator habitat in urban spaces can have large environmental benefits including increased biodiversity, wildlife viewing opportunities, education, and water quality improvement.

The City of Niagara Falls has been increasing habitat on their properties through various initiatives in collaboration with the Park in the City Committee including the planting of native trees, shrubs and wildflowers for the benefit of nature and local residents. In 2018, the City became one of the first Bee Cities in Canada. Willow’s Rest is the first of its kind in the Niagara Region, allowing residents to be buried in an environmentally friendly manner. 

What: 200 Sq. m Pollinator Garden installation at Fairview Cemetery in Niagara Falls in honour of Former NPCA Board Member Mickey DiFruscio and his family. This event is in partnership with the NPCA, City of Niagara Falls and the Park in the City Committee.

Where: Fairview Cemetery.  4501 Stanley Avenue, Niagara Falls, Ontario, L2E 2E8

When: Wednesday, September 16, 2020 starting at 10 a.m. The event will conclude once all native wildflowers are planted (approximately two-hour duration).

Who: The NPCA, City of Niagara Falls, The Park in the City Committee and several volunteers will be installing the plant material in the pollinator garden. A spokesperson from each organization will be available for interviews and photo opportunities.

Why: Planting a pollinator garden is a great way to provide habitat for important bee species that provide essential resources that affect our food chain. Public pollinator gardens can also become an essential educational outlet where residents can learn about the importance of pollinators and their effects on our environment.

For more information, contact:
Mark Richardson

City of Niagara Falls – Fairview Cemetery
Phone: 905 356 7521 ext. 5301
Email: mrichardson@niagarafalls.ca

Jeff Guarasci
City of Niagara Falls – The Park in the City Committee
Phone: 905 356 7521 ext. 3341
Email: jguarasci@niagarafalls.ca

Kerry Royer
Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority
Phone: 905 788 3135 ext. 234
Email: kroyer@npca.ca