Please Note

Due to Covid-19, we are requiring that participants pre-register for all events,
including free workshops and walks.


Phone: 902-651-2575

Since 1991, we’ve been offering a variety of free programming, from fun-for-the-whole-family events like our popular Owl Prowls to hands-on workshops like Pruning. We love to share our expertise and enthusiasm with anyone curious about our native landscapes.

Due to popular demand, our offerings have grown to include our adventure-filled Sharing a Love of Nature Summer Camps, our in-depth School of Woodland Ecology, and our immersive University Courses.

If you have any questions please contact us by phone (902)651-2575 or email:

Click here to download a PDF of our Events Calendar

Online Events Calendar

Pruning Trees and Shrubs
May 19 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am

Participants will practice pruning on a variety of plants in the nursery, arboretum and woodlands. Please bring along any of your favourite pruning tools. Workshop will include a slide show and demonstration of proper pruning methods and a discussion of recommended books and tools.

Hedgerows and Windbreaks
May 26 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am

This workshop will look at creating diverse, beautiful and functional hedgerows and windbreaks using a variety of native plants.

Plants of PEI with Kate MacQuarrie
Jun 2 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am

In celebration of Island flora, biologist Kate MacQuarrie will be sharing her love of plants at Macphail Woods on Saturday, June 2. Kate will walk the nature trails of the Sir Andrew Macphail Homestead in Orwell, starting at 10 am at the arboretum. She will point out common and uncommon species of flowering and non-flowering plants. Wildflowers, ferns, club mosses, shrubs – all these and more will be part of the discussion and identification.

For many years, Kate has travelled different types of habitats across the Island looking for both rare and common plants. In her work with the Island Nature Trust and now as Director of the Forests, Fish and Wildlife Division of the Department of Communities, Land and Environment, she has studied dune systems, old growth forests, and everything in between. This field work has given her an intimate knowledge of both native and non-native plants.

This walk will be an excellent opportunity to learn about woodland flowers such as bunchberry and nodding trillium, as well as rarer wildflowers and ferns. There is no charge for the walk and no registration is necessary. Participants are advised to bring good walking shoes and clothing appropriate to the weather conditions. For more information, call 651-2575, check out our web site ( or visit us on Facebook.

Over the years, hundreds of people have taken part in the plant workshops at Macphail Woods and become more observant of the natural world around them. This event is just one of the many nature and forestrelated walks and workshops sponsored by the Environmental Coalition of PEI throughout the year.

Acadian Forests and their Inhabitants at Risk with Bob Bancroft
Jun 10 @ 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm

We are thrilled that Bob is coming over again from Nova Scotia. The well-known CBC Radio Noon guest and advocate for nature throughout the region will explore how forests across the region are being clearcut and the dependant species are being threatened. Bob will offer insights into how we can protect and enhance our forests and what individuals – whether woodlot owners or concerned citizens – can do to stem the tide of destruction.

Forest Restoration Workshop
Jul 14 @ 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm

A walk and talk in a wide variety of forest habitats at Macphail Woods. The focus will be on restoring the native Acadian forest, looking at enhancement methods used on the property over the past 27 years and trying to find solutions to problems faced by woodlot owners.

Tracking the Mammals of PEI
Jul 28 @ 10:00 am – 11:30 am

Come on out and learn about the native and introduced mammals found on PEI, as well as a brief look at some of the mammals we’ve lost. After a brief slideshow, we’ll head off to the woods looking at a variety of animal tracks and signs. A great activity for the whole family!

Arboretum Volunteer Afternoon
Aug 11 @ 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Come out and help with our work on our Native Plant Arboretum. We’ll have lots of tools and compost and mulch, and a variety of native shrubs, wildflowers and ferns to plant. This is already a beautiful area and will continue to improve over the years as we add more plantings of both rare and common species. Come out to help anytime between 1pm and 4pm.

September Stargazing
Sep 22 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Learn about the night sky and get to know some constellations. This outing will teach some basics of astronomy and then head out into the dark for naked-eye stargazing.

Autumn in the Forest
Oct 14 @ 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm

Woodlands are wonderful places at any time of the year, but a forest in autumn is always special. There are still lots of birds around, the witch hazel is blooming, and many plants are showing their fall colours. On Sunday, October 14, staff of the Macphail Woods Ecological Forestry Project will be leading an Autumn Woodland Walk through the trails on the Macphail Homestead in Orwell.

The walk will be an excellent opportunity to learn about the natural history of Prince Edward Island and develop an appreciation for woodland communities. It begins at the nursery at 2pm. Visitors will be able to see the progress on the expansion of our native plant arboretum.

This is just one of the many walks and workshops at Macphail Woods that help participants become more observant of the natural world around them. Registration is not required for this free walk. For more information on this or upcoming tours and workshops, please call 651-2575, check out our web site ( or look us up on Facebook.

Owl Prowl
Apr 17 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm

Come join the Macphail Woods Ecological Forestry Project in celebrating the wonderful world of owls at one of this year’s Owl Prowls. To meet the growing interest in these fascinating birds, there will be Owl Prowls at the Macphail Homestead in Orwell on April 17, 19, 21 and 27th.

The Sir Andrew Macphail Foundation will open up the Great Room of the Homestead at 6:30pm and serve light refreshments. Visitors can warm themselves by the fireplace and enjoy the historic beauty that surrounds them. There will be no charge but donations to the Foundation will be gratefully accepted.

The presentation on owls starts at 7:30pm at the Nature Centre. This is an excellent opportunity to learn about these rarely-seen birds. From the tiny “saw whet” to the large “great horned”, owls have long been birds of mythology and misinformation. The workshop will separate fact from fiction, combining an indoor talk with an outdoor walk.

The talk starts with pictures and recorded calls of common and uncommon owls that can be seen on Prince Edward Island. There are also mounted displays of some of these birds as well as educational materials on owls and their habits.

Participants can then take a guided walk around the woods and try calling in owls. Make sure to bring clothes suitable to weather conditions. There is no admission for the workshop and everyone is welcome. This is a very popular event and visitors are advised to come early. We’re also asking the public to only attend one of these workshops, as our space is limited.

These owl prowls kick off an extensive series of outdoor activities at Macphail Woods, a project of the Environmental Coalition of Prince Edward Island. For more information on this or upcoming tours and workshops, please call 651-2575, visit the website ( or find us on Facebook.

  • Owl Prowl #1: Wednesday April 17th – 7:30pm
  • Owl Prowl #2: Friday April 19th – 7:30pm
  • Owl Prowl #3: Sunday April 21st – 7:30pm
  • Owl Prowl #4: Saturday April 27th – 7:30pm


Although we offer multiple owl prowls, we ask that you only attend one so that everyone has an opportunity to participate.

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