Oakville is a green Town, and because we love our trees and greenspace, we also take measures to conserve what we have and nurture areas that have been affected by natural tree enemies such as the Emerald Ash Borer.
The Emerald Ash Borer has been a problem for Oakville tree conservationists for years and years. Numerous programs have been launched to help protect our trees and recently, another one was launched to replace the trees we’ve lost.
Pelee Woods Trees Replacement
Oakvillegreen launched a tree planting program to help Oakville parks that have been hit by EAB. A few days ago, volunteers flocked at Pelee Woods Park to plant new trees to replace the ones that have been damaged by EAB and/or removed. This event launched the TreeKeepers program, a program by Oakvillegreen Conservation Association that encourages concerned residents to be stewards of the land.
The program’s goal is to empower and educate residents to be urban TreeKeepers so they can carry out their own neighbourhood’s on-the-ground stewardship. This is done by providing residents with free trees, helping with removal of invasive species, hosting neighbourhood events, and providing stewardship training.
Preserving Our Greenspace
It is no secret that Oakville has been losing ash trees because of the Emerald Ash Borer infestation problem. Christen Dschankilic, coordinator of the Oakvillegreen Urban Forest Stewardship program shared that this is a major problem that is causing damage to Oakville’s urban forest.
In an interview with Oakville Beaver, Dschankilic shared that the number of removed EAB-damaged trees at Pelee Woods affected the woodlot as a whole, and therefore the trees had to be replaced.
Combating the damage caused by invasive species such as the EAB can be accomplished by educating residents about how important caring for urban greenspaces is and planting new trees. This is supported by Mayor Rob Burton, who stated in a press release that the TreeKeepers program is a terrific way to help grow and protect each community’s green canopy. He added that Oakvillegreen has been instrumental in helping create a more sustainable and livable Oakville for everyone through the TreeKeepers program.
The TreeKeepers Program
The TreeKeepers program was designed to help increase tree diversity in Oakville as well as support Oakville’s future goal of having a 40% urban canopy coverage with the help of residents and volunteers. It is funded by The Alma Fund and the Oakville Environmental Fund and is open to all Oakville residents.
Recently, the TreeKeepers program hosted a replanting and removal event at Perkin’s Passage and will continue to have similar events in the future. If you feel that there are areas in your neighbourhood that can benefit from the program, or if you aren’t sure how you can be a part of Oakville’s green canopy goal, you are welcome to attend TreeKeeper training sessions which will be available throughout summer. You can also get updates by signing up for Oakvillegreen’s newsletter.
Need more information? Feel free to contact the Oakvillegreen’s Urban Forest Stewardship Coordinator via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Oakville TreeKeepers’ Program page.
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