Community helps Rowntree Mills Park sustainability

By Sean Delaney

On Sunday, April 23rd, the Toronto Region and Conservation Authority( TRCA ) once again hosted a community planting event at Rowntree Mills Parks. Many residents assisted with the continuation of planting new shrubs and bushes.

I spoke with Nicole with the TRCA, one of the coordinators for the community-based restoration team. “Well, to start, we are here to help grow the forest canopy by planting new trees and shrubs, doing our best to make sure that the soil in the park is fertile and does not erode,” she said. “Today we planted 150 trees and shrubs, which will add to the already hundreds that have been planted over the past few years. We are testing a wide variety of trees and shrubs to see which ones best grow to help re-naturalize the park. We are essentially bringing the forest line down closer to the river. Our ultimate goal is to develop additional meadow habitats that can shelter more small animals and migratory birds.

“Taking vital, ongoing measurements of the various plantings will help the city decide which species thrive and are the best ones they should continue planting at that point. Less of the selection process is left to chance, which significantly reduces the chance of failure and waste of resources. The overall monitoring project is slated for five years.

“Today was a great day and a great start to another year for this project and moving toward our ultimate goals.”

Councillor Anthony Perruzza and staff, MPP Tom Rakocevic, and the team have been very active in the program. Many local schools and students have participated since 2019, the beginning of the project. And many thanks to local community activists and environmentalists Grant Evers and Edith George.

Planting at Rountree Mills Park will resume again in the Fall. For a list of calendars and events, please visit the TRCA website at: