Craigflower Manor Gardens

Craigflower house fence

The gardens at the Craigflower Manor, a provincial and national heritage site, were cleared for agricultural uses in the late eight hundreds. The homestead is located along the picturesque shore of Portage Inlet near Craigflower Bridge. The gardens lie on the east side grand house that was built for the Mckenzie Family. Kenneth McKenzie was the Hudson’s Bay Company bailiff and homesteader for the original three hundred and sixty hectare farm that extended east and south from the manor. Cartographical illustrations show that the route for Craigflower Road led though the property. The two story house with bilateral symmetrical windows and doorways, a style considered Georgian, was completed in eighteen fifty six. This one hectare property has rose beds, pine trees and a grove of larch trees (Larix occidentalis). There are also several raised garden beds used for the community grown vegetables. Portage Inlet borders the property to the north and east. Craigflower Bridge marks the junction of the inlet with the Gorge waterway that connects to Victoria Harbour. Information signs on the property explain the historical uses of this area that spanned green space. Shoreline Community Middle School Green Space, Shoreline Drive Green Space, Craigflower Road Green Space, Portage Park, Glentana Road Green Space and the Gorge Park, in Saanich where the Craigflower Schoolhouse resides, are nearby.

Geographical location N48° 27’ 7” W123° 25’ 27”

Craigflower Manor Gardens can be reached from the Trans Canada Highway (Hwy 1). Exit onto Admirals Road and turn south. Continue across the Craigflower Bridge to the first driveway after the bridge. This leads into the small parking area and just before Craigflower Road. City buses travel along both Admirals Road and Craigflower Road. Additional parking can be found near the shopping complex to the south.

The heritage site is open seasonally with living history interpreters providing information about the lands.

Ross Bay Cemetery Green Space

RBC trees 2 RBC pine trees 2 RBC Chilean pine

Eleven hectares along the water front of Ross Bay, Salish Sea, form the Ross Bay Cemetery, and its green space, in the Fairfield community of Victoria, B.C. This cemetery is like a large neighborhood park that has a unique arboretum, amazing sculptures and monuments as well as plenty of benches and pathways. There is even a restroom located near the southwestern corner, off Memorial Crescent. It is a remarkable site to visit as a hiker, history buff as well as a naturalist.Two creeks, East Creek and South Fairfield Stream, once flowed through these lands forming deep ravines that have been diverted into culverts. The ravines were filled during development in this area which now hosts space for over thirty five thousand interments. These consist mostly of double-depth plots. The tombstones vary from ornately elaborate gabled Gothic tablets, obelisk and bi-columnar monuments to simple granite tablets and screens. Thus allowing remembrance of the various historical figures of Victoria, B.C. Numerous trees and shrubs were planted in eighteen seventy two during development and are considered heritage trees for this area. Due to its proximity to the seashore, salt spray tolerant trees and plants form the windbreak and border along Dallas Road and Ross Bay Walkway. These include white pine, Wheatley’s and cork bark elm and tamarisk, a salt cedar, trees. Within the park are several Garry oak trees, black locust and big leaf maple trees. A large Camperdown elm, Ulmus glabra, a form of Scotch elm tree; and atlas cedar tree can also be found along the pathways. The trees that form the length of Memorial Crescent are a mixture of conifer trees including a temple juniper, Austrian pine, Chilean pine, Japanese red pine, and Himalayan white pine. The hedge plants form the park border along Memorial Crescent, Fairfield Road and the alleyway of St. Charles Street include ash, boxwood, English hawthorn, holly, laurel and yew. There are several books and many brochures like those provided by the Victoria Heritage Foundation and the Old Cemeteries Society with burial information in this cemetery. Clover Point Park, Ross Bay Walkway, Little Ross Bay Park, Hollywood Park, Porter Park and Moss Rock Park are nearby.

Geographic coordinates N48° 24′ 39” W123° 20′ 39″

Ross Bay Cemetery can be reached from Blanchard Street. Turn east onto Fairfield Road. Look for the cemetery at 1495 Fairfield Road between Memorial Crescent, St Charles Street and Dallas Road. There is limited roadside parking and numerous access trails to the grounds. City buses travel along Fairfield Road from downtown Victoria.