“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago and the next best time is today.”
On Sunday, 23 April, the Windsor-Essex community celebrated Earth Day 2017 by planting 2205 trees and shrubs. We moved to a new location this year in the Little River Corridor Park. Planting took place on both sides of the Ganatchio Trail south of Wyandotte Street East.
Over 1,000 accurate community volunteers participated in this event! Volunteers worked from 10 a.m. to 12 noon. Mother Nature provided an outstanding day for planting trees: sunny with a clear, blue sky and mild temperatures over the morning. In other words, it was a wonderful Spring day to plant trees and shrubs!
The species of trees we planted included: White Oak, Pin Oak, Hackberry, Red Oak, American Elm, Burr Oak, Sycamore, Swamp White Oak, Silver Maple, Shumard Oak, Tulip Tree and Eastern Cottonwood.
Little River Corridor Park, between Riverside Drive and McHugh Street, has now benefitted from the planting of 15709 trees and shrubs since May 1990. The recreation trails throughout the area will permit people to make the much needed 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 included: Canada Goose, Mute Swan, Red-winged Blackbird, Eastern Cottontail and Mallard Duck. In the stormwater retention pond, the Mute Swan displayed aggressive behaviour toward the Canada Goose; the swan’s wings were uplifted and curved as it swam toward the goose, the goose’s head was lowered as it swam away from the swan. Eventually, the goose flew away and the swan owned the pond. A wildlife highlight for the day for Ian was seeing the Bald Eagles that were nesting nearby. One was in the nest and the other was flying in a big circle around the nest. We see this as nature sending the tree planters a message of approval: “When a pair of Bald Eagles decided to build their nest in the Little River Watershed, we took that as a validation that all of our efforts have been worthwhile.”
Planning for the event was done by the Essex Region Conservation Authority, Detroit River Canadian Cleanup Committee and the City of Windsor. DRCC funded the trees via the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change. Event organizers appreciated the efforts from the 15 How To Crew volunteers who were an incredible force for planting trees.
Whenever people do something good to make the Earth a better place to live, they can go home satisfied that they have made a difference.
Event report written by Ian Naisbitt, the Chair of Little River Enhancement Group and the Education and Public Involvement Group with the DRCC.
Earth Day Gallery