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Maple Leaves Forever’s 2017 Birthday Present to Canada

Maple Leaves Forever’s 2017 Birthday Present to Canada


What do we think of as Canadians, to identify? We think of the maple tree. If not the maple tree, the maple leaf, maple
syrup, it’s just a part of our whole heritage. I’m Ken Jewett, I’m the founder of Maple Leaves
Forever. I was born in Toronto, Ontario. Our native maples were disappearing from the
landscape of rural Ontario. I saw this happening and made a pledge to
try to stop this. Seven year ago, we went down to inquire
what was happening in the City of Ottawa. The National Capital Commission, by their
own admission, probably hadn’t planted any native maples in the last 20 years. They were planting invasive trees, and trees
that were imported from Oregon. So we said, don’t you feel badly about that? And they said, yeah, we do. In the late 19th century farmers planted roadsides
and laneways, with maples dug from their woodlots in return for government incentive. This gave rise to a legacy of lines of maples
and other hardwoods bordering rural roads, and dividing farm fields. Many of these trees have died. We are working on replacing them with native
Canadian maples. The maple leaf is Canada’s national and arboreal
symbol. As such we should encourage the planting of
native maples in this country as a symbol of national pride and identity. Maple Leaves Forever encourages rural landowners
and municipalities to continue to plant native maples. Sugar maple and native maple being some of
the primary species in the woodlot. Our function is to provide people with answers
to their questions, and give them advice as to where to go to buy truly native trees. My name is Rob Keen, I’m CEO of Forests Ontario
and Director of Maple Leaves Forever, and we’re very proud to be a partner with Maple
Leaves Forever and to provide our support where we can to further their mission of planting
native trees and specifically, native maple trees. It’s really really important that we promote and use native trees in our activities and certainly our forests and tree-planting activities. There are some organizations that are going
to promote invasives and non-natives in their activities and certainly, if those species
get into the natural ecosystem they’re going to have an impact on the natural species that
are there. Huge domino to the flora and fauna. A rural landowner who wants to plant native
maples along their roadside or laneway, goes to our website, makes an application, goes
and buys the trees from the nursery, sends us his invoice and we send him a cheque for
25% of the cost of the trees. Our website lists many nurseries that stock
native Canadian maples. This is Maple Leaves Forever’s modest
2017 Birthday Present to Canada. We encourage all Canadians to plant a native
Canadian maple to help Canada celebrate its
150th Birthday.

Author Since: Mar 11, 2019

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