March 06, 2013

All the tree news that newsprint can handle

As published in The Erin Advocate

As Erin's self appointed tree reporter, I am glad to bring you all the breaking news about our strong, silent companions. The recent heavy snow has certainly tested their flexibility and shown off the dramatic beauty of their limbs.

Trees will certainly carry on without us when we're gone. But considering how hard we've tried to reduce their population, it only seems right that we give them a hand up. Bountiful greenery is one of the best ways to offset climate change, and there's no harm in boosting the oxygen supply.

For rural landowners, planting trees can reclaim land from agriculture, help protect streams and wetlands, and increase wildlife habitat. Working with the Credit Valley Conservation (CVC) Tree Seedling Program, you can plant your own forest for about $150.

Anyone with an interest can drop in to a free information session tomorrow (Thursday, March 7) at the CVC Forestry Services’ new office, 15526 Heart Lake Rd, Caledon, any time between 7 and 9 p.m.

“Many landowners interested in planting trees might not know where to start,” said Mike Puddister, CVC's Director of Restoration and Stewardship. “This is an opportunity to get in-depth, one-on-one advice from our forestry department to help plan your next tree planting project.”

Those with existing hardwood and evergreen woodlots will learn about forest management challenges and best practices.

CVC has three programs to promote private land reforestation and stewardship, offering inexpensive tree planting services and plant materials to eligible landowners.

Their mechanized reforestation service plants more than 100,000 bare root seedlings every year, in late April to mid-May. The main tree species used in the program are White and Red Pine, White Spruce, Tamarack, Cedar, Sugar Maple, Red Oak, Silver Maple and Black Cherry.

The Naturalization Planting Program provides a more customized service, using potted trees and shrubs, for properties over two acres that need natural improvements. CVC also sells its potted stock directly to qualified landowners (over one acre) who want to do the planting themselves, as long as they order at least 20 units.

For more information, including a link to details on Ontario's Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program (MFTIP), go to Check out the Your Land and Water section, which includes a series of pages on Countryside Living.

To discuss tree planting options on your property, contact Brian Boyd, Forestry Planting Project Coordinator, at 905-838-1940 or

Another option for those with properties of one acre or more is an upcoming "Caring for Your Land and Water Workshop", offered free by CVC on Tuesday, March 19 at the Inglewood Community Centre.

CVC staff will guide participants through the completion of worksheets from the Your Guide to Caring for the Credit Handbook on special interest topics such as forests, wetlands, septic systems, water wells and landscaping. Participants receive customized property maps, a copy of the handbook and a homeowner stewardship kit.

Register this week, with your lot and concession number, by contacting Andrea Morrone, 1-800-668-5557, ext 436 or

Meanwhile, tree huggers and planters should mark May 4 on their calendars. Erin's Trails Committee is teaming up with CVC, members of the Rotary Club and other community volunteers for a tree-planting blitz.

The target is the slope of the Deer Pit next to the Elora Cataract Trail, just north of the high school. Last year's successful planting was done along the Rotary Trail, between the water tower and the Delarmbro subdivision.

That first weekend in May is shaping up to be a busy one in Erin, since the Environmental Advisory Committee is holding its annual Clean-Up Day, and the new Transition Erin group is holding its big "Unleashing" event.

So check The Advocate for more details in the coming weeks, and be sure to recycle it when you're done. And in case you're wondering, the production and use of paper is not causing forests to disappear. Trees for paper are grown and replenished like a crop.

Like any product, paper should not be wasted. But newsprint makers say that not using paper in order to save trees is like not eating salad in order to “save” vegetables. Do you buy it?