Favorite The Ontario Chainsaw Massacre – Impacts of the Ice Storm Persist

It would seem like ice storm damage to the urban forests of southern Ontario is yesterday’s news. Damage done, power restored, and fallen limbs and trees cleaned up. In actuality, there is still a chance for this devastating event to … Continue reading

Climate ’causes leaves to narrow’

By Mark Kinver http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-18674808 Leaves are getting narrower on some plant species as a result of changes to the climate, a study has suggested. A team of Australian researchers studies specimens from the wild and from herbarium collections stretching back … Continue reading

St. Catharines to boost spending on urban forest

Marlene Bergsma http://www.stcatharinesstandard.ca/2014/02/02/st-catharines-to-boost-spending-on-urban-forest St. Catharines’ efforts to double the size of its urban forest are getting chopped down by two invasive pests. The emerald ash borer has already felled about 350 city-owned ash trees and the Asian long-horned beetle is poised … Continue reading

Challenges in Conserving Canadian Biodiversity – panel

Wed. Feb. 12th UofT Erindale Campus, Instructional Centre, 3359 Mississauga Rd., Mississauga What lies ahead for Canadian biodiversity? On Nov 5th, 2013, the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development tabled his report on the state of Canadian biodiversity. Join us for a … Continue reading

Community Involvement key to Urban Forest Plan

Tigard wins national kudos for forestry plan By Andy Giegerich Sustainable Business Oregon Editor http://sustainablebusinessoregon.com/articles/2014/01/tigard-wins-national-kudos-for-forestry.html The city of Tigard’s urban forestry plan has landed national honors for its “innovative, flexible, and incentive-based approach.” The city won a National Planning Award from … Continue reading

A wood of one’s own: Germaine Greer’s mission to save the trees

In White Beech: the Rainforest Years, Germaine Greer is on a mission to save the ecology of South Australia.  by Richard Maybey. http://www.newstatesman.com/2014/01/wood-of-ones-own Like it or not, Australia is now a laboratory for a gigantic experiment in biological multiculturalism, a schemata of … Continue reading

The Witness Trees

http://www.cbc.ca/ideas/episodes/2013/11/25/the-witness-trees/ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s epic poem Evangeline begins with the words “This is the forest primeval”. Longfellow was talking about the rich Acadian forest, and was taking a little poetic license. In fact, settlers and boat-builders had already pillaged those forests. They … Continue reading

Panel Discussion Community Meeting- Tree Canopy

Devastation of Our Urban Canopy  (Mark Cullen) http://markcullen.com/library/devastation-of-our-urban-canopy/ For Our Grandchildren is sponsoring a community panel that will have recommendations for preserving Toronto’s tree canopy. Jaye Robinson, Ward 25 Councillor, will moderate the panel. Panel members are Mark Cullen, Toronto Star … Continue reading

Input sought on proposed private property tree bylaw

by Scott Rosts Niagara This Week – St. Catharines

ST. CATHARINES — Promote, develop, balance, manage, contribute and protect. Those are the strategies the St. Catharines Urban Forest Advisory Committee is hoping to achieve in a proposed private property tree bylaw. The city wants to hear residents’ input on the proposed bylaw designed to protect trees on private property, and will host the first of two open houses on Thursday, Jan. 30 to glean input from residents.

Mike Anderson, development horticultural technician for the City of St. Catharines, said the city is one of few that doesn’t have such a bylaw, adding it was identified as a future action when the city passed its Urban Forest Management Plan in spring of 2011.

“It was part of the management plan for most municipalities,” said Anderson, who notes the proposed bylaw is an important part of ensuring the hundreds of thousands of trees in St. Catharines are protected.

The proposed bylaw, he said, would balance feedback from residents with the city’s conservation goals. The public input, he said, is critical since the bylaw would be dealing with private property.

Elizabeth Chitty, chair of the City’s Urban Forestry Advisory Committee, said the group has come into the public process with a completely open mind. No bylaw has been prepared to date, she said, as they want to ensure they hear from residents before putting together any draft. She said the committee has put a considerable amount of time to come up with different options under consideration that could help formulate the bylaw – some with punitive actions, some not.

“The options we looked at are all different choices and go in different directions,” said Chitty. “We want to hear from people on what they think, so we can bring that back to our February meeting to begin our next steps.”

She said residents should get informed about the project, and its purpose. Slides from a presentation that will be made at each open house, along with background information on the process, which is available online at www.stcatharines.ca/treebylaw. Chitty said she expects some different opinions from residents during the input process. Her committee alone, she said, has had differing opinions, so the feedback from the community is integral to the next steps.

“The trees in our community are absolutely critical to protect,” said Chitty of the importance of such a bylaw. She said the tree canopy in the city is important to everything from air quality and physical and mental health, to economic development.“A beautiful place is where people want to live and work,” she said.

The open houses run from 7-9 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 30 and Thursday, Feb. 6 at the St. Catharines Kiwanis Aquatics Centre. No RSVP is required. Meetings will include a brief presentation and then group discussions with committee members. Notes will be taken for the committee.

Those who are unable to attend the meetings can fill out an online survey online at www.stcatharines.ca/treebylaw. Within days of launching the survey, nearly 200 residents had already completed it, said Anderson.




Why Saving the Humewood Maple Matters

It all began with a tree. One homeowner wanted it cut down and the other didn’t. The problem is that the tree is situated on their shared backyard property boundary. In the City of Toronto, the private tree by-law regulates … Continue reading