(September 26, 2019, -- FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE) Yesterday, on National Tree Day, which falls within National Forest Week, the urban forest in Township of King grew by a whopping 350 native trees and shrubs thanks to the leadership of not-for-profit LEAF – Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests and the support of the Township of King and The Regional Municipality of York!
It was tree planting all day long at the Township of King Municipal Office! The afternoon had approximately 30 grade three students from King City Public School and 30 Grade 11 Biology students from King City Secondary School, working hard at planting and mulching all the young plants. Later the same day, local residents dug in to complete the planting, some of whom were lucky enough to go home with a free native shrub. In addition to the many ecological benefits of trees, the new plantings will expand the existing woodlands, adding biological diversity to the Municipal grounds.
The Township of King Mayor Steve Pellegrini, kicked off the evening community planting event by welcoming everyone to the municipal offices where the planting occurred.
Township of King Mayor Steve Pellegrini welcomed the planting volunteers. “This is the perfect site for a planting. Throughout the property we have natural, pollinator friendly landscaping, a healthy woodlot and a provincially significant wetland, home to countless species creating a very diverse ecosystem. This planting among the many others King facilitates helps to green our municipality, increase our natural capital and offset the GHG emissions we produce.”
James Lane, York Region Manager of Natural Heritage and Forestry, Environmental Services, spoke on behalf of the Region. “York Region has a woodland cover target of 25% and an urban forest canopy cover target of 35% by 2031. Today’s planting will contribute to the expansion of our tree canopy cover, woodland cover and biodiversity, while mitigating the impacts of emerald ash borer and enhancing the local watershed. Through the Region’s Greening Strategy, York Region is able to provide programs like the LEAF Backyard Tree Planting Program.”
Erin MacDonald, Community Programs Manager at LEAF rounded out the welcome with a message for all in attendance. “Working with partners and engaging the public is extremely important to our efforts,” said MacDonald. “The students, community members, and municipal partners showed their commitment to growing the urban forest and caring for its survival today. This hands-on work is how we bring the benefits of trees to all of us for years to come.”
National Tree Day happens on the Wednesday of National Forest Week. It is a day to celebrate all the great benefits that trees provide for us. A healthy urban forest can improve air quality, reduce stormwater runoff, provide wildlife habitat, reduce noise pollution and even improves our health! Planting native trees and shrubs is the way to a greener city.
To learn more about the planting and stewardship programs available, please visit:
Caption: LEAF Community Program Manager, Erin MacDonald; Mayor Steve Pellegrini; Councillor Debbie Schaefer; Councillor Jakob Scheider; York Region Manager of Natural Heritage and Forestry, James Lane; and, King Chief Administrative Officer, Daniel Kostopoulos
Community Programs Manager
LEAF – Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests
416-413-9244 x12, cell 647-620-3746
Township of King
The Regional Municipality of York
1-877-464-9675 x77272, cell 905-251-6416