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Spring break at Espace pour la vie: a bio-diversity of activities

Montréal, February 5, 2024 - 

For spring break, Espace pour la vie is offering a “bio-diversity” of fun and educational activities in each of its five museums. Discoveries about fauna, the environment, insects, flora and space await you!

 

AT THE BIODÔME

Bio-Clues: Improving Biodiversity Through Research

Embark on an educational adventure in the Biodôme’s ecosystems. Discover the rich biodiversity of the Americas through an interactive exploration. Along with the Biodôme’s education team, learn how to identify and classify the various flora and fauna. Get ready for a fascinating journey where every step brings you closer to nature and its secrets.

March 2 to 17

 

AT THE BIOSPHÈRE

Family Saturday and guided activities

On March 2, Family Saturday offers a movement workshop inspired by the photographic exhibition Still. In motion. Let’s move to the rhythm of nature. Come and move in sync with the starlings... or the icebergs!

All week long, take this opportunity to visit all the current exhibitions in the sphere and get ready for some awesome discoveries!

Family Saturday : March 2
Exhibitions and guided activities

 

AT THE INSECTARIUM

A special encounter

In the heart of our Great Vivarium, get to know an insect or another unique arthropod. A friendly guide will accompany you in this intimate moment. Imagine enjoying the company of insects! This is how ties are formed and a new story begins.

Daily | Duration: 20 minutes | For everyone | Schedule


AT THE JARDIN BOTANIQUE

In the mood for the great outdoors?

We remind you that the outdoor gardens are accessible free of charge every day for walking and cross-country skiing (depending on snow conditions).

Daily from 9 am to 5 pm

 

AT THE PLANÉTARIUM

Total eclipse : Chasers of the Lost Sleep

On April 8, 2024, we will experience an exceptional astronomical event: a total eclipse of the Sun. To prepare for it, take part in an immersive and wacky show at the Planétarium, and follow Kentucky—an insomniac hen and social media star who lives on the Moon—in her adventures to demystify solar eclipses! With help from JOS, her whimsical android sidekick, she embarks on a space-time journey to Earth to find the perfect solar eclipse that will finally help her get some sleep. Join them on their journey to discover the perfect conditions to witness this unique phenomenon, in an immersive and wacky show at the Planétarium.

Ages 7 and up - Running time: 25 min | Show schedule

 

The Planétarium’s programming also includes daily events and an enhanced schedule of performances for young audiences.

 

Treat yourself to our museums!

Enjoy special access to our five museums for a whole year! Available in digital format at a very affordable price, our Espace pour la vie Passport comes with numerous perks. It’s sure to please families, adults, students and nature enthusiasts.

 

Find out all about our programming and museums at espacepourlavie.ca/en.

 

About Espace pour la vie

Espace pour la vie is made up of five major attractions: the Biodôme, the Biosphère, the Insectarium, the Jardin botanique and the Planétarium. These prestigious municipal institutions form Canada’s largest natural science museum complex. Together, they are launching a daring, creative urban movement, encouraging all of us to rethink the connection between humankind and nature and cultivate a new way of living.

 

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English

Creating the Jardin botanique of tomorrow

Participate in the 2nd workshop of the traffic lanes redevelopment project!

Register now!

On the eve of its 100th anniversary in 2031, the Jardin botanique is putting forth a vision and orientations that will ensure the sustainability of its infrastructures, the consistent delivery of its mission and the realization of its contribution to the Montréal community, in addition to maintaining its international reputation as one of the 10 most important botanical gardens in the world.

Revealing the essential role plants play in preserving life on Earth and achieving the socio-ecological transition

To fulfill this vision, the Jardin botanique has adopted three strategic orientations that will guide, among other things, the refurbishment and development projects to be completed over the next few years.

1. A model garden for the socio-ecological transition and a showcase for demonstrations

It will implement mitigation—notably for GHG emissions—and adaptation measures. It plans to integrate phytotechnologies so that plant-based solutions can be showcased throughout the institution. At a time when the climate emergency has become a crisis of unprecedented proportions, the Jardin botanique de Montréal must play an even greater role in the socio-ecological transition and in achieving the City of Montréal’s carbon neutrality goal. As such, it must be a model metropolitan institution, sharing its knowledge and experience with the public and other organizations in Montréal, Québec, Canada and abroad, showcasing the beauty of plants and the crucial role they play.

2. An inspiring and universally accessible garde

The visitor experience will be revamped with a new, appealing and safe itinerary that will enable all visitors to enjoy it in equal measure. Certain gardens, exhibits, facilities and services will be enhanced, and new features will be offered to the public, notably to make the experience and information more accessible and inclusive. All these accessibility and inclusion measures will take into account gender-based analysis and beyond (GBA+), which aims to recognize and remove exclusions by taking into account all people who may experience forms of discrimination based on a number of factors, including age or limitation. The Jardin botanique will ensure its long-term future by refurbishing its infrastructure and showcasing its rich heritage.

3. A garden committed to its community and the world

A number of events will be organized to bring visitors closer to nature, most of which will be based on the collections and cultures presented at the garden, while also enhancing the reputation of Espace pour la vie and increasing visitor traffic. The Jardin also hopes to involve the public and its partners, particularly Indigenous peoples, by offering them opportunities to create, express themselves, and share. Programming will also include enhanced educational activities to help citizens take action towards the socio-ecological transition, notably by promoting the development of key skills and bringing plants at the core of solutions.

Espace pour la vie invites citizens to reflect together on upcoming projects

Several refurbishment and development projects are currently underway, in line with the priorities of Montréal 2030 and Espace pour la vie. In order to create an inclusive and accessible garden, Espace pour la vie proposes participatory workshops to integrate the experience and needs of citizens from the earliest project planning stages.

Initiated in 2022, these targeted consultations will help to plan projects in collaboration with members of groups experiencing exclusion. This is crucial to ensure that the design considers the diversity and range of needs of the population as a whole.

The process, initiated in 2022, is ongoing. Everyone is invited to register for the workshops.

Receive the dates of upcoming workshops, subscribe to our newsletter Our Time to Act   

2.1 - Redevelopment of the traffic lanes at the Jardin botanique

The aim of this project is to revise the overall traffic flow to ensure a fluid, immersive experience for all visitors. The first phases of this redevelopment project will begin in 2025, but the timetable will vary from sector to sector.

  • Workshop 1 - January 21 and 23, 2024 (completed)

Workshop 2 - REGISTRATION - closing date: April 29     

2.2 - Refurbishment of the Western Gardens

Among the first exhibition gardens laid out by Henry Teuscher (1931 to 1949), several of the exhibition gardens in the western sector, known as the Western Gardens, are now in need of major work. The Western Gardens include the Perennial Garden, the Food Garden, the Garden of Innovations, the Québec Corner, the Monastery Garden, the Medicinal and Poisonous Plants Garden and the Shrub Garden. Work in this sector will be carried out between 2025 and 2028.

  • Workshop 1 - September 2023 (completed)
  • Workshop 2 - Fall 2024 (dates to come)

2.3 - Project to create a new space with children and families in mind

Four spaces adapted for children and families are planned at various locations on the site to ensure an inclusive and captivating visit for all. The very first area will be located in the Garden of Innovations. It will feature participatory games and experiments focusing on the discovery of water. By its very nature, the Garden of Innovations is an ideal place for experimentation and demonstration. It will be built as part of the redevelopment of the Western Gardens between 2025 and 2028.

  • Workshop 1 - April 30, 2023 (completed)
  • Workshop 2 - Fall 2024 (dates to come)
English

IT’S Halloween Shivers TIME at the Jardin Botanique

Montréal, September 12, 2023 - 

From September 29 to October 31, Halloween is taking over Espace pour la vie, blurring the boundaries between fantasy and reality. The Sorcerer Kalbacius will be seizing the opportunity to take control of the Jardin botanique’s Main Greenhouse, along with his fantastic creatures and—surprise!—his apprentice, Petiole, who will soon be obtaining his bewitchment diploma.

Children and their parents are invited to come help Petiole learn new skills and practice their own sorcery technique! There’ll be a wand handling class, potions workshop, the power of squash revealed and Magic Steps Circuit—everything is set to wow Kalbacius! Visitors will also have the opportunity to see a play featuring none other than Frisson l’écureuil (Scaredy Squirrel), a much-loved children’s book character created by author Mélanie Watt. A fun, bewitching time awaits you!

Sorcerer’s Haven

Main Greenhouse – Daily, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Guided activity between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. on weekdays, and between 10 a.m. and 4:15 p.m. on weekends
The sorcerer’s haven is home to a menagerie of strange creatures. As harvest season comes to a close at the Jardin botanique, Kalbacius has gathered a wide variety of squashes to exercise his powers.

You can see Batterfluff, bizarre gourds and cat-spiders; discover a strange vegetable garden and a chilling tunnel; keep an eye out for bewitched creatures and meet Kalbacius (who’s always busy studying our world) and his apprentice Petiole, who’s curious to learn sorcery skills!

Classes are in session!

Main Greenhouse
Classes offered daily, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Wand handling

Learn how to wield a magic wand and master its unsuspected powers!

The power of squash revealed

The large cucurbits family has much to reveal at Halloween. Learn about the different types of squash and their secret powers to help you hone your witchcraft skills!


PULL OUT YOUR BOOK OF SPELLS and join in the fun!

Potions Workshop

Hospitality Greenhouse – Daily, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Here, it’s all about experimenting! To become a sorcerer, you first have to master the art of potion-making. The plant witchery class is a program requirement for all apprentices. This potions workshop puts the focus on plants and the power of the imagination!

Frisson l’écureuil et la course aux bonbons

Play for children aged 4 to 8
Frisson l’écureuil (Scaredy Squirrel), a character created by author Mélanie Watt, is worried: How do you prepare for the scariest day of the year when you’re afraid of everything? Will he be ready to go trick-or-treating?

Auditorium – In French only
Sept. 29 to Oct. 6, Oct. 10 to 13 and Oct. 31: at 11:30 a.m.
Oct. 7, 8, 9 and Oct. 14 to 30: at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Space limited. Specific tickets (free) can be reserved online. Valid upon presentation of a Jardin botanique or Gardens of Light admission ticket for the same date. Passes also available at the Welcome Desk, subject to availability. Reservations recommended for groups (514-868-3000).


Outdoor activities


Magic Steps Circuit

From 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
With guided activities Sunday to Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday and Saturday (and Sunday October 8), 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Have fun exploring and searching the garden for creatures that have escaped from Kalbacius’s clutches and run away. Fun activity for the whole family!


KOWAI! Des histoires à faire peur…

– for children aged 4 to 8
Japanese Pavilion — Monday to Friday, at 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, at 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Japanese folklore teems with spooky characters: ogres, witches, spirits and demons. Are you brave enough to listen to tales of their evil deeds? Yield to the charm and power of kamishibai—Japanese paper theatre. Your imagination will take care of the rest!


Online ticketing and schedule

Two for one!

Gardens of Light (Jardins de lumière) continues until October 31. Take advantage of your visit to combine two magical events at the Jardin botanique.
Tickets for Gardens of Light provide all-day access to the outdoor gardens and greenhouses.
The Gardens of Light visit takes place at the time indicated on your ticket.

Online ticketing

We are grateful to the Friends of the Garden for their financial support for the Halloween shivers activities.

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Omics to Close the Loop: a Jardin botanique project to reduce the carbon footprint of the urban agricultural sector

Did you know that agriculture, food waste and waste management generate more greenhouse gas than all the cars, trucks, trains and boats in Canada put together? It was to find a solution to this and for other reasons that researchers from the Jardin botanique and the Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS) are working with partners from the Montréal agrifood sector.

Waste turned into fertilizer – and even into food!

Thanks to the circular economy, problems related to agrifood waste have been transformed into a win-win partnership. What’s happening is, bakeries, breweries and other local manufacturers of fruit- and vegetable-based products are supplying organic waste used as raw materials by Montréal-based entrepreneurs. By using innovative biotechnologies like composting, mushroom growing (myciculture) and insect rearing (entomoculture), these companies are turning waste into food or fertilizer.

Science for optimizing ecological profitability

These processes of organic-waste transformation depend largely on microorganisms that waste contains, which at this point are not well understood.

Over time, the project Omics to Close the Loop will allow for a better definition of these biological mechanisms and therefore for improvements in their efficiency – for example in diagnosing the health of agricultural systems, in making the most of how these perishable raw materials are used, or in improving the health of agricultural soils with fertilizers truly suited to urban conditions and able to increase carbon storage.

With the aim of more fully understanding these processes, the scientists from the Jardin botanique are studying how the microorganisms specific to these materials work. They’re examining the way in which agrifood waste is digested and then how the organisms that exist in these products improve soils and crops.

To unveil this infinitely small world of microorganisms, microbial DNA and existing biochemical mechanisms are studied by way of so-called omics technologies. This integrated approach, consisting among other things of isolating the microorganisms of interest, creating a series of databases and doing a computer modeling of complex systems, enables an understanding of the roles that each one may play with regard to greenhouse gases, carbon storage in the soil, and the health of crops.

Concrete, applicable results

Omics to Close the Loop brings together institutions, scientists and stakeholders from the urban agrifood industry to process waste in a way that reduces the use of fertilizers and foods with a higher carbon footprint:

  1. by improving the production of composting, of mushrooms and of the rearing of edible insects;
  2. by generating byproducts of great value for the health of agricultural soils and of crops;
  3. by combining genomic research with studies on social, economic, and environmental impact.

In the longer term, the project will offer solutions that can be implemented by the entire Canadian agricultural sector. In processing a greater volume of agrifood waste through decentralized composting (10%), through mushroom farming (5%) and through insect farming (5%), 220,791 tonnes of CO2 emissions could be avoided and 202,379 tonnes of carbon fixed in the soil in 2035 in Canada.

Co-researchers

  • Joan Laur, biologist-researcher, Jardin botanique
  • Louise Hénault-Ethier, associate professor and centre director, INRS

This project is supported by a $6.5 million grant from Genome Canada.

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