By taking the course, a participant can expect to be taught the basics of trees by an expert, to meet other tree lovers and to feel inspired to engage in their community as an urban forest leader. The program is meant for any and all interested community members, regardless of their experience and skill level. However, as an added bonus to participating ISA certified arborists, those who attend all four classes can receive 12.00 ISA Continuing Education Units (CEU's).
Working together to identify trees
The program includes both lecture components and hands-on learning activities, in both an indoor and outdoor setting. Participants will learn everything from the benefits of the urban forest and the stresses of an urban tree to native tree and shrub identification and plant biology. It is a great introductory course for first-time tree stewards or a great refresher for those more knowledgeable. Thanks to our long-term partner, Ontario Power Generation, we’ve been offering the course since 2006!
Trees in urban settings have many stressors
Our next course runs September 18th through the 25th. We are especially excited about this upcoming course because of a brand new partnership with the Humber Arboretum and Centre for Urban Ecology, where the training course will take place. Located in Etobicoke and part of Humber College, the Arboretum encompasses 105 hectares and includes several botanical gardens, as well as a natural Carolinian forest; there’s even a section of the West branch of the Humber River running through the grounds!
The Centre for Urban Ecology located in the Humber Arboretum
The Humber Arboretum is part of the Carolinian Life Zone, the plant community native to Southern Ontario and the most biologically diverse ecological region in Canada. The Arboretum’s forest is dominated by species typical of this region, like sugar maple, American beech and bur oak. In 2015, it was designated an Environmentally Significant Area (ESA) by the City of Toronto as it is the habitat of a large number of vulnerable, rare or threatened plant and wildlife species.
Sugar maple, American beech and red oak
The Humber Arboretum is the perfect setting as it will allow our participants to take what they learn in the classroom sessions to an outdoor and natural setting. With a great example of the Carolinian forest right outside the door, participants will have first-hand experience learning about native species, their role in the ecosystem and how to care for and protect them.
Learning how to identify spruce trees
This exciting new partnership is just the latest example of how year-after-year we try to make our Tree Tenders Volunteer Program as special and useful an experience as we can. Every year, graduates are able to use the knowledge gained to better their communities, neighbourhoods or their own yards.
Making friends by getting involved
Here is what some of our graduates have to say about the course:
For more information and to sign up for the September course, visit here!
Daniela Serodio is the Marketing and Communications Intern at LEAF.