We Design, plant, and care for

BEAUTIFUL
EARTH FRIENDLY
GARDENS

RAINscapeTO is a social enterprise based in Toronto that offers eco-landscaping services with a focus on the installation of rain gardens and other beautiful sustainable landscapes.

Book a 45 min consultation to learn about the best options for your property and get a no-obligation quote. The cost of the consultation is $85 (HST inc),

which will be fully reimbursed if you hire us for any services (design, implementation, maintenance).

If this fee represents a barrier for you, let us know and we will decrease or waive it.

 

Since 2021, the City of Toronto has partnered with RAINscapeTO and Building Up in a new project to hire and train individuals experiencing barriers to employment for the maintenance of bio-swales, pollinator gardens and other green spaces that are critical to improve neighbourhoods’ climate resiliency and biodiversity. The pilot, called GreenForceTO, creates local green jobs in landscaping and property maintenance, builds employment skills, and aims to develop career pathways for community members. Visit www.toronto.ca/greenforceto for more information.

Wages to trainees

Trainees Employed

Garden consultations

Native Plants

Square Meters of Gardens

Beautiful Gardens

We focus on beautiful native plants that attract butterflies, pollinators and birds.  Your garden will have four season interest and will contribute to biodiversity.

Focused on You

We listen carefully to your preferences, needs and garden dreams. We then work with nature to provide a tailored solution for your lifestyle.

Inspired by Your Local Ecosystem

We bring our deep knowledge of regional ecosystems to develop a solution specifically adapted to your soil type, current plants and sun exposure.

Protect Your Property & Reduce Neighbourhood Flooding

Rain gardens help alleviate basement flooding, erosion, and local flooding issues.

Less Maintenance & Need to Water the Garden

 Native plants are adapted to the climate and rain gardens keep the moisture in your garden.

Indigenous Knowledge & Perspective

We value Indigenous knowledge and perspective towards our land and waters. Our Indigenous team fosters the relationship between urban ecosystems and landscaping practices.

Increase Property Value & Curb Appeal

A beautiful and sustainable garden can add to the value of your house and enhance the neighbourhood.

Recharge Groundwater

Encouraging rainwater infiltration allows for the rejuvenation of our groundwater sources; an important supply of fresh and clean water.

Protect Rivers & Lakes

With a rain garden, storm water soaks into the ground instead of flowing over roads to pick up oil, gas, salt and heavy metals that end up in the rivers and lakes. 

Jose Torcal, Manager

Jose holds a Master in Civil Engineering and has over 8 years of experience working in urban sustainability and public space across 6 different countries. Jose is focused on supporting the global movement towards sustainable communities and has a strong commitment to collaborate across sectors and organizations to address climate change and improve our cities, starting from the community.

Prior to joining RAINscapeTO, Jose was a Program Manager in the Sustainable Neighbourhoods team at the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA).

René Fan, Project Manager

René is a landscape architect with a background in geography, environmental studies, and historic preservation. Originally from Calgary, she studied in Montreal and worked in New York before Toronto. She has experience with the assessment and repair of historic buildings, and the design and construction of landscapes and civic spaces.

She is very excited to be doing environmental work with RAINscapeTO and Building Up in partnership with the City of Toronto for the GreenForceTO pilot project. René is involved with the community garden at Eglinton Park managed by the TGC, as well as Lost Rivers, a program of the TGC exploring the waterways of Toronto, above ground and buried, and reviving connections to land, water, and settlement patterns.

Mary Jenkins, Project Coordinator

Mary is Nêhiyaw (Plains Cree) two-spirit from Treaty 6 territory who uses they/she pronouns. Mary has an environmental sciences background in ecosystem management focusing on Indigenous perspective, practices, and lived experiences. Mary is passionate about bringing forth Indigenous social and environmental rights within predominantly colonial settler communities. They are deeply dedicated to assisting with harmonizing the relationship between ourselves and our environment, especially in an urbanized setting such as Tkaronto (Toronto/GTA).

Mary has worked in various capacities in workshop and project development in educational and recreational settings. They have assisted multiple project teams with developing environmental restoration plans with aspects of soil erosion mitigation, native flora species reintroduction, and SAR reintroduction among other environmental needs.

Robin Jacko, Team Lead

Robin Jacko is a proud Anishinaabe woman of the Three Fires Confederacy from Wikwemikong  Unceded First Nation. Her Spirit Name is Strong Thunderbird, and she is of the Mukwa dodem. Robin has loved being in the outdoors since she was a child. She first got acquainted with the earth and the plant beings when she first explored her grandfather’s vegetable garden as a young child. Her interest really piqued when she threw a sunflower seed in front of her home one spring day and witnessed it grow throughout the summer. She was impressed with the power, beauty, and resiliency the sunflower presented. The next season, she grew her first vegetable garden with great success and found her passion for gardening.  

 The following season Robin quit her office job to pursue her passion for plants. Since, she has worked in community gardens, designed and curated a Medicine Wheel Garden in Eglinton Park, facilitated on-the-land programming for Indigenous families through co-founded grassroots group Maamwizdaa, and is now in her third year of working with RAINscapeTO as Lead Hand working with native plants. She is currently working on the Growing Our Roots Project in partnership with Toronto Green Community to Indigenize Eglinton Park Community Garden through Indigenous-arts-based programming and placemaking.

Eco - Landscaping Crew

The landscaping crew is comprised of diverse Indigenous peoples of northern Turtle Island (currently known as Canada). Our crew is of varying age, gender representation, status/ non-status Indigenous peoples. We welcome rural and urban life experienced individuals. Each work season, we strive to offer cultural accommodations and resources.

As part of the Eco – Landscaping crew, we deepen our sense of community by integrating Indigenous protocol, teachings, and perspectives into our work. This is culturally significant and meaningful work to be able to tend to the urbanized land and ecosystems. We get to nurture the land and waters, as well as our relationship with them, here on T:karonto territory to Wendat, the Haudenosaunee, the Anishinabek, the Mississaugas of the Credit and home to many other Indigenous peoples. Eco – Landscaping allows us as Indigenous peoples a chance to connect with Mother Earth in an urbanized setting and help decolonize the lack of biodiversity in urban ecosystems.

If you are interested in joining our Eco – Landscaping Crew, please send your cover letter and resume here.

Paula Messina, Human Resources Advisor

During her 30 years of working and volunteering in various roles with non-profit agencies,  Paula has always endeavoured to highlight the intersections between various issues, sectors,  and communities to help create meaningful connections and a common understanding that nurtures positive outcomes.  

Paula was introduced to the environmental movement during her 10 years at Greenpeace.  Since 2008, Paula has brought a Diversity & Inclusion lens to her grassroots, environmental work with the Toronto Green Community (TGC), adapting programs and approaches to better engage newcomers and racialized people. Paula expanded this lens to build a foundation of partnerships and employment opportunities for the Indigenous community, lending to the Indigenisation of TGC’s programs including Rivers Rising, Eglinton Park Community Garden programming, and the development of the social enterprise, RAINscapeTO.  

Amongst her varying volunteer roles, Paula served on the Board of Directors of a Settlement Services Agency for 11 years and is currently involved in Circles for Reconciliation. Her passion for the environment, human rights, social justice, and Indigenous Rights keeps her engaged in the community.

Helen Mills, Program Advisor

Helen has been involved with TGC since its inception, most specifically as a former board member, co-
developer of the Green Garden Visit, founding partner of Green Gardeners Community Collaborative sometimes referred to as GGCC.

With GGCC, a key player in the establishment of Eglinton Park Heritage Community Garden, and founder of Lost
Rivers, a project that connects people with the lost watersheds and water infrastructure of the city through walking tours, storytelling, eco-interventions, and online maps and information.

Helen is an independent landscape design consultant and garden educator who has been researching and building residential rain gardens since 2008. Helen has been and will continue to consult on the ongoing development of RAINscapeTO which was launched as a pilot program by TGC in 2016.

Made Possible THROUGH THE SUPPORT OF

Land acknowledgement

We wish to acknowledge Toronto as a sacred gathering place for many people of Turtle Island. We recognize the long history of First Nations people in Ontario and show respect to the Wendat, the Haudenosaunee, the Anishinabek, and the Mississaugas of the Credit.The territory was the subject of the Dish With One Spoon Wampum Belt Covenant, an agreement between the Iroquois Confederacy and the Ojibwe and allied nations to peaceably share and care for the resources around the Great Lakes. This territory is also covered by the Upper Canada Treaties.Today, Toronto is a home and meeting place for Indigenous people from across Turtle Island. We are grateful to be here.– Chi Miigwetch, Kinanaskomitin, Nia:wen, Maarsi, Yaw^ko, Tiawenhk.