Matthew Higginson's picture
Posted by Matthew Higginson /
child with a shovel planting trees at Milne Hollow
Milne Hollow is located along the Don Valley, sitting between the edges of Scarborough and North York. Surrounded by a major highway in what is a former industrial site, it is one of the most magnificent examples of how diverse our canopy can be. When I first arrived I was struck by the way it stood beaming with colour, so full of life. This is no accident – the city of Toronto has been working to renaturalize this site for over a decade and in 2011 LEAF signed on to help them achieve their goals.
 

 

 

Last fall I joined a large group of volunteers in planting trees and shrubs to further build this stunning corner of Toronto's urban forest.  The weather called for rain but spirits ran high as the clouds overhead cleared and the mercury started to rise.  And as our Education and Stewardship Coordinator, Jessica Piskorowski was busy running back and forth to make sure everything went according to plan, a couple of our incredible volunteers and I worked to capture the days events on film. 

 

In under an hour we'd already planted all of the trees and shrubs that came with us and many of our Tree Tenders graduates began to lead us through mulching them properly.  Not only did we successfully introduce truckloads of native species into the area, but we also checked in on the ones that had been planted last spring. 

 

One of the tenents of our mission was to raise awareness of this beautiful site.  By animating the space with tree tours, stewardship events, educational workshops and planting days throughout the year, we introduced new audiences to one of Toronto’s most wildly stunning spaces. 

 

I'm almost as excited to launch this video as I was to hear we had surpassed our overall planting goals for 2011.  But more than either of those things I can hardly wait to get back to the urban oasis this spring.  If you've never been, consider taking a walk along the valley and up through Milne Hollow to see a wilder side of Toronto the Good.

 



 

I'd love to hear your comments below and encourage you to share stories of your city's wildest spaces.

 

Comments

I've been a volunteer at Milne hollow for a couple of years. Throughout the summer we pull out and/or cut down massive quantities of garlic mustard, fragmities and other invasive species. Our group of volunteers is coordinated by the City of Toronto, specifically Cheryl Post,and provides clippers, gloves, wheelbarrows,inspiration and botany lessons. It's all good fun, good exercise and keeps the bad weeds from spreading further and crowding out our native species.
THANK YOU FOR FEATURING MILNE VALLEY IN YOUR VIDEO. I HAVE BEEN PART OF THE STEWARDSHIP PROGRAM THERE FOR THREE YEARS AND APPRECIATE THAT LEAF HAS PUT SO MUCH EFFORT INTO DEVELOPING THE SITE. THANK YOU.
This is an excellent example of the work of LEAF and its critical community partners in improving the quality of our natural urban public spaces and the quality of life of residents.

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