Between Hartwell’s Locks, the Fletcher Wildlife Garden and Prince of Wales is a small corner of land that is being used for Canadensis, a small botanical exhibit with several art installations themed around nature. Karen and I have been cycling past it dozens of times and recently we finally decided to park our bikes to check it out. (It’s free after all). We had noticed the banner from the road, but we were always on our way to something or someone. It is a true gem.
Access is from the Experimental Farm pathway that leads off Prince of Wales towards the Hartwell’s Locks. For orientation purposes, this is just west of the tower at Carleton U.
Canadensis –according to the website- is “a magical botanic place where visitors can enrich their lives with unique learning experiences that excite and stimulate the senses.”
In 2016, Canadensis Botanical Garden Society partnered with the Canada Council Art Bank to present outdoor works by a group of artists who created installations in response to three outdoor sculptures on loan from the Art Bank collection. “Beyond the Edge: Artists’ Gardens” is installed on part of the site designated for the future Garden of Canada.
On the ground it is more a typical Eastern Ontario rural landscape, but with five art installations surrounding a small cornfield. Every installation is heavily leaning on nature (obviously) and panels explain what the art is about, who has made it and what was intended.
I am not going to copy the text from the panels, for you can go yourself and explore it. It is probably about a 500 meter walk and you will discover some nice spots. It is wheelchair accessible, but after a rain fall it might be hard work. I recommend you go at the end of the day, say around 5- 5:30pm, when the light is softer and the sun emits that golden hue. Take the bike, or if you don’t have access to a bike, pick up a VeloGo bike at the Dow’s Lake station and cycle along the canal towards the Hartwell’s Locks and then follow the gravel-ish path uphill towards Prince of Wales. It is on your right hand (north side). Banners will give it away too.