Monarch Awards back in 2024

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The Hamilton Monarch Awards are going biennial! This means that we will be taking a break for 2023 and returning for the summer of 2024. Here’s why…

All the Monarch Awards volunteers really enjoy connecting with and expanding the ecologically minded gardening community here in Hamilton. However, listening to feedback and looking at recent applications, we’ve noticed that holding the site visits and awards year after year does not give gardeners and their gardens enough time to reach their full potential. Holding visits every second year will give these gardens and gardeners extra time to evolve. Many Caterpillar Award recipients work hard to “graduate” to a full Monarch Award—but it usually takes a few years to make enough changes to meet the Monarch criteria. By moving to every two years, we hope to not only recognize more novice gardeners but also see more of those caterpillars transform into monarchs!

As well, Hamilton’s Biodiversity Action Plan will be finalized by the end of 2023. Being backed up with solid public policy will be a huge advantage for the Monarch Awards in 2024. With a mandate to increase biodiversity, Hamilton will be committed to supporting ecologically functional, biodiverse, nature-friendly gardens. It’s what the Monarch Awards have been doing for the past seven years! Public consultation on the Biodiversity Action Plan happens in May and June 2023. All Monarch award applicants are encouraged to read and share your thoughts on the draft document. Stay tuned to for details.