Our Initiatives

Pollinator on a Native Plant
Pollinator Garden near New Canaan's Train Station
Image of Butterfly on a Native Plant
Planet New Canaan Fundraiser with the New Canaan Beautification League
PNC Fundraiser for Native Plants

Pollinator Pathway

Overview of New Canaan’s Pollinator Pathway

In April 2019, ten town organizations, including Planet New Canaan, joined forces to create the New Canaan Pollinator Pathway. The Pollinator Pathway’s goal is to create a pollinator-friendly corridor throughout New Canaan, using both private and public land. The corridor provides pollinators, such as bees, hummingbirds and butterflies, a continuous path of much needed pollinator friendly habitat.

Pathway Partners work together to expand New Canaan’s pollinator corridor by:

  • Educating the public on how to create pollinator friendly gardens on their own properties; and
  • Working with the Town and local non-profits with land to establish and maintain pollinator gardens.

How Planet New Canaan Has Helped

In Spring 2019, Planet New Canaan created a bi-annual fundraiser with Copia Home and Garden in neighboring Vista, New York. Every spring and fall, when gardeners often plant new plants, PNC and Copia raise funds for a designated New Canaan Pollinator Pathway partner. With every purchase of $75 of native plants, Copia donates $10 native plants to the chosen organization. 

Our fundraising program provides more native plants to properties open to the public and encourages homeowners to plant native plants on their own properties. Since the program’s inception, over $3,000 has been raised, enabling the purchase and planting of native plants valued at $6,000. (Copia gives us the plants at the wholesale price — amplifying their donation).

For more information on the Pollinator Pathway, please visit the Pollinator Pathway website.

Native Tree Planting

Planet New Canaan ran a crowd-sourced fundraising campaign in April 2021 to purchase native trees for the Town of New Canaan’s treasured park, Waveny Park. The goal of $7,500 was quickly reached; Sustainable CT, matched the raised amount with a grant of $7,500

Fifteen large, native plants purchased with the raised funds were planted by New Canaan’s Public Works Department in Waveny Park in September 2021, replacing many old, beautiful trees that had been lost over recent years. A combination of red maples, sugar maples and dogwoods were planted. Native trees provide habitat and food sources for our native birds, bees, insects and invertebrates – supporting biodiversity, contributing to New Canaan Pollinator Pathway, and enhancing carbon sequestration.

Planet New Canaan Banner Wrapped around a Tree in Waveny Park
Planet New Canaan, Chris Schipper and New Canaan Public Works Recognizing Planting of Native Trees
Signage at the Darien Swap Shop
Image of the inside of the Darien Swap Shop

Swap Shop

After a Covid-related delay, we are gearing up for our next sustainability project: The Swap Shop. Our new waste-reduction program is built off the adage:

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

Darien Swap Shop

Darien’s popular Swap Shop serves our model. Piloted in 2009 in an old tent, Darien’s Swap Shop is now housed in a permanent 25’ x 25’ structure of corrugated metal with a foundation, electricity, skylights and an overhead fan, funded by a grant from DEEP in 2017.

The Swap Shop enables residents with a town permit to drop off or pick up usable items that are in good shape but no longer wanted for free.

At any given time, the Swap Shop contains hundreds of items including everything from pots and pans to ski equipment, electronics, tools, and toys. The obvious benefit: reusing items that otherwise would be thrown away or recycled.

Coming Soon

Working with Public Works, we are outlining our program. Stay tuned…we will be raising funds!

Wine Cork Drop Off

Planet New Canaan decided to address the opportunity to salvage corks from our municipal waste stream. The problem was observed when touring a Material Recovery Facility (where all recyclables go to get sorted), we learned that wine corks are not accepted and end up in the trash.
 
Planet New Canaan teamed up with New Canaan Nature Center to find a sustainable alternative. The solution started with ReCORK: company committed to a sustainable future, one cork at a time. ReCORK collects natural wine corks and makes them into different products. To date, ReCORK has collected over a 100 million natural wine corks.
 
 A cork drop-off was set up at the Nature Center’s lobby. From there, collected corks have one of two destinations: they are sent to ReCORK; or diverted to art teachers and used for student projects. So collect natural wine corks only (the plastic corks can not be recycled) and drop them off in the Nature Center lobby. Also, when buying wine, buy bottles with sustainable natural wine corks!
Katie Owsley who helped create PNC's Cork Recycling Program at New Canaan Nature Center with AE Bill Flynn
Collected Corks that Can be Recycled

Pollinator Pathway

Overview of New Canaan’s Pollinator Pathway

In April 2019, ten town organizations, including Planet New Canaan, joined forces to create the New Canaan Pollinator Pathway. The Pollinator Pathway’s goal is to create a pollinator-friendly corridor throughout New Canaan, using both private and public land. The corridor provides pollinators, such as bees, hummingbirds and butterflies, a continuous path of much needed pollinator friendly habitat.

Pathway Partners work together to expand New Canaan’s pollinator corridor by:

  • Educating the public on how to create pollinator friendly gardens on their own properties; and
  • Working with the Town and local non-profits with land to establish and maintain pollinator gardens.

How Planet New Canaan Has Helped

In Spring 2019, Planet New Canaan created a bi-annual fundraiser with Copia Home and Garden in neighboring Vista, New York. Every spring and fall, when gardeners often plant new plants, PNC and Copia raise funds for a designated New Canaan Pollinator Pathway partner. With every purchase of $75 of native plants, Copia donates $10 native plants to the chosen organization. 

Our fundraising program provides more native plants to properties open to the public and encourages homeowners to plant native plants on their own properties. Since the program’s inception, over $3,000 has been raised, enabling the purchase and planting of native plants valued at $6,000. (Copia gives us the plants at the wholesale price — amplifying their donation).

For more information on the Pollinator Pathway, please visit the Pollinator Pathway website.

Pollinator on a Native Plant

Native Tree Planting

Planet New Canaan ran a crowd-sourced fundraising campaign in April 2021 to purchase native trees for the Town of New Canaan’s treasured park, Waveny Park. The goal of $7,500 was quickly reached; Sustainable CT, matched the raised amount with a grant of $7,500

Fifteen large, native plants purchased with the raised funds were planted by New Canaan’s Public Works Department in Waveny Park in September 2021, replacing many old, beautiful trees that had been lost over recent years. A combination of red maples, sugar maples and dogwoods were planted. Native trees provide habitat and food sources for our native birds, bees, insects and invertebrates – supporting biodiversity, contributing to New Canaan Pollinator Pathway, and enhancing carbon sequestration.

Planet New Canaan, Chris Schipper and New Canaan Public Works Recognizing Planting of Native Trees

Swap Shop

After a Covid-related delay, we are gearing up for our next sustainability project: The Swap Shop. Our new waste-reduction program is built off the adage:

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure

Darien Swap Shop

Darien’s popular Swap Shop serves our model. Piloted in 2009 in an old tent, Darien’s Swap Shop is now housed in a permanent 25’ x 25’ structure of corrugated metal with a foundation, electricity, skylights and an overhead fan, funded by a grant from DEEP in 2017.

The Swap Shop enables residents with a town permit to drop off or pick up usable items that are in good shape but no longer wanted for free.

At any given time, the Swap Shop contains hundreds of items including everything from pots and pans, clothing, jackets, and fabrics to ski equipment, electronics, tools, and toys. The obvious benefit: reusing items that otherwise would be thrown away or recycled.

Coming Soon

Working with Public Works, we are outlining our program. Stay tuned…we will be raising funds!

Image of the inside of the Darien Swap Shop

Wine Cork Drop Off

Planet New Canaan decided to address the opportunity to salvage corks from our municipal waste stream. The problem was observed when touring a Material Recovery Facility (where all recyclables go to get sorted), we learned that wine corks are not accepted and end up in the trash.
 
Planet New Canaan teamed up with New Canaan Nature Center to find a sustainable alternative. The solution started with ReCORK: company committed to a sustainable future, one cork at a time. ReCORK collects natural wine corks and makes them into different products. To date, ReCORK has collected over a 100 million natural wine corks.
 
 A cork drop-off was set up at the Nature Center’s lobby. From there, collected corks have one of two destinations: they are sent to ReCORK; or diverted to art teachers and used for student projects. So collect natural wine corks only (the plastic corks can not be recycled) and drop them off in the Nature Center lobby. Also, when buying wine, buy bottles with sustainable natural wine corks!
Katie Owsley who helped create PNC's Cork Recycling Program at New Canaan Nature Center with AE Bill Flynn

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