Planting a Tree for Mom

By |2019-06-10T17:20:08-04:00June 10th, 2019|The Egret Article|

Planting a Tree for Mom

Written by Ian Naisbitt for The Egret – Issue 35 – Number 2

I planted a tree today. I know it doesn’t look like much now, but I followed the routine I have learned to give the slight sprig a good chance of survival. I dug a bigger hole than the pot the sapling was in, broke up the soil-clay mixture from the hole, unpotted the tree and placed it in the hole. Then I replaced the soil in the hole and lightly pressed it down. I made sure to return all the dirt over the potted soil. A tree wrap was placed around the base of the tree. I walked over to the mulch pile and filled up two empty pots with wood chips, spread the mulch around the base of the tree and made it look like a “wood chip doughnut” – the centre lower than the outside.

Tree planting
The tree planted on May 11, 2019 at Windsor’s former wood disposal yard. Photo by Ian Naisbitt

A teensy twig, eh?

Our community tree planting on Saturday, May 11, was sponsored by Forests Ontario, the Essex Region Conservation Authority, the City of Windsor and the Detroit River Canadian Cleanup. The site being restored to natural habitat is the former City of Windsor wood disposal yard on Cherry Blossom Drive, off Ojibway Parkway. This location is adjacent to the Black Oak Heritage Park and, fortunately, the existing forest will provide native seeds to enhance the naturalization of the city’s former yard. There is enough room at this site to keep our community partnership busy planting trees for a decade!

Even though the location was off the beaten path, over 50 community volunteers showed up to plant a tree for Mother Earth. Since it was the day before Mother’s Day, we planted one for our mom too.

“Celebrate Mom or any of the amazing women who strengthened your roots and made you grow strong and healthy by planting a tree in their honour.”

What a wonderful day to participate in the morning tree planting experience. This was a family event. Young children joined their mothers and grandmothers. Dads were there too. Mother Nature cooperated by providing sunshine and saving the rain until later.

In Zorba the Greek, Nikos Kazantzakis describes an encounter between his principal character and an old man busily at work planting a tree.

“What is it you are doing?” Zorba asks.

The old man replies: “You can see very well what I’m doing, my son. I’m planting a tree.”

“But why plant a tree,” Zorba asks, “if you won’t be able to see it bear fruit?”

And the old man answers: “I, my son, live as though I were never going to die.”

The response brings a faint smile to Zorba’s lips and, as he walks away, he exclaims with a note of irony: “How strange – I live as though I were going to die tomorrow.”

We plant trees today so future generations will enjoy a hike in the cool shade of the forests we are creating.

I planted a tree today: our future forests.

Tree planting
Volunteers plant trees at the City of Windsor’s former wood yard. Photo by Gina Pannunzio.
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Earth Day 2019 Planting Event

By |2019-06-10T17:18:09-04:00June 10th, 2019|The Egret Article|

Earth Day 2019 Planting Event

Written by Gina Pannunzio and Ian Naisbitt for The Egret – Issue 35 – Number 2

“When we plant a tree, we are doing what we can to make our planet a more wholesome and happier dwelling-place for those who come after us.” — Holmes

On Sunday, April 28, the Windsor-Essex community celebrated Earth Day 2019 by planting 2,200 trees and shrubs. We planted in Little River Corridor Park: along the Ganatchio Trail and around the pond, west of the Florence Avenue and Beverly Glenn Street junction in East Riverside.

Over 1,400 community volunteers participated in this event and many were first time planters. Volunteers worked from 10 a.m. to noon. There were 60 volunteer groups that registered to help plant. Event organizers appreciated the efforts of the 40 How 2 Crew volunteers who were an incredible force for planting trees.

Tree planting
Volunteers plant trees in Little River Corridor Park on Earth Day. Photo by Ian Naisbitt

Saturday’s foreboding forecast: “Cloudy. Periods of rain beginning this evening then changing to periods of snow or rain after midnight. Local snowfall amount: 2 cm. Wind becoming northeast 20 km/h near midnight. Low plus 2.”

Yowzah, snowfall?

Sunday morning’s forecast: “Periods of rain ending early this morning then clearing. Wind northeast 20 km/h, which is moderate according the Beaufort Wind Force Scale. High 11 Celsius. UV index 6 or high.”

After the foreboding forecast, what an enjoyable surprise it was to see the sun emerge from the overcast sky.

The species of trees we planted included: white oak, American elm, pin oak, red maple, burr oak, sycamore, basswood, swamp white oak, silver maple, Shumard oak, tulip tree and eastern cottonwood.

Little River Corridor Park, between Riverside Drive and Tecumseh Road, has now benefitted from the planting of 20,681 trees and shrubs since May 1990. The recreational trails throughout the area will permit people to make the desired connection with nature. They may even be lucky enough to experience the different species of wildlife that call this area home. Wildlife observed in the area on the day of the tree planting included: Canada goose, mute swan, red-winged blackbird, turkey vulture, American robin, killdeer and mallard duck.

Tree planting
Volunteers plant trees in Little River Corridor Park on Earth Day. Photo by Ian Naisbitt

Planning for the event was done by the Essex Region Conservation Authority, Detroit River Canadian Cleanup (DRCC) and City of Windsor. The DRCC paid for the trees with funds from the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change.

“Never say there is nothing beautiful in the world anymore. There is always something to make you wonder in the shape of a tree, the trembling of a leaf.” — Albert Schweitzer

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TD Tree Days Windsor, 2018

By |2018-12-12T12:31:17-04:00November 22nd, 2018|The Egret Article|

TD Tree Days Windsor 2018

Gina Pannunzio, Kelly Laforest, Claire Sanders and Ian Naisbitt

Written for The Egret Newsletter – Volume 34 – Number 4 – December 2018

On Saturday, 20 October, TD Bank sponsored their TD Tree Day program by inviting our Windsor-Essex community to help TD employees plant trees. Groups that participated included: City of Windsor, Detroit River Canadian Cleanup, Essex Region Conservation Authority, Essex County Nature – Little River Enhancement Group, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation and Caesars Windsor – CodeGreen.

The planting site is located in the Detroit River Watershed in East Windsor’s Little River Corridor Park, west of Florence Avenue and north of McHugh Street. This natural area is the same site that our community has planted to celebrate numerous Earth Days.

We enjoyed a typical and pleasurable Autumn day: a mix of sun and cloud, mostly cloudy, temperature in the morning of 8 Celsius increasing to 12 C by 11 a.m. There was a calm breeze of 30 km/ hour and the UV index was 3 or moderate. All of this created a pleasant planting experience for the 70 eager tree planters.

Children, their parents and other community volunteers participated by digging holes; planting, wrapping and mulching 300 trees! We started planting at 9:00 a.m. and the job was completed at 11:15, what an effective group!

Once the volunteers walked into the field, hundreds of grasshoppers took flight. A little later on a gaggle of Canada Goose flew overhead, but they were flying in a northern direction, their inner compass must be spinning? A solitary Monarch Butterfly was checking out the purple New England asters in the area, it too was flying in the northern direction. Maybe they were looking for cover since they knew a thunderstorm was on its way? The heavy afternoon rain will be a great help to settle the soil around the newly planted trees.

The species of trees that we planted included: Burr Oak, Swamp White Oak, American Elm, Red Oak, Basswood, Hackberry, Freeman Maple and American Sycamore. About 80% of the trees that we have planted at this site over the years survived and their leaves are providing fall colours for us to enjoy.

Essex County Nature – Little River Enhancement Group would like to thank TD Bank, Essex Region Conservation Authority and the Detroit River Canadian Cleanup for planning this well – organized community event. This TD Tree Day 2018 volunteer effort addressed the Beneficial Use Impairment, “Loss of Fish and Wildlife Habitat” of the Remedial Action Plan by improving the ecosystem health of the Detroit River Watershed.

Today’s TD Tree Day planting event brings the total number of trees and shrubs planted by community volunteers in the Little River Watershed to 42,169. This is definitely a “Gain of Fish and Wildlife Habitat!”

TD Tree Days Windsor Photo Gallery




Click here to return to the December 2018 Egret newsletter.

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