Written by: Robert Leone, Festival & Community Outreach Assistant
With spring just around the corner, our green thumbs here at Conservation Halton are twitching in anticipation as we gear up for this year’s largest community tree planting event – Trees for Watershed Health!
Launched in 2006, Trees for Watershed Health is a Conservation Halton community outreach program designed to engage local residents and community groups in tree planting. The goal of the program is to bring communities and nature together to help increase forest cover in the Halton watershed. Over the course of nine consecutive years, the program has seen more than 4,600 volunteers plant over 47, 000 trees and shrubs at various sites throughout Halton. These large-scale planting projects contribute to Conservation Halton’s broader mandate to achieve 30 percent forest cover within our watershed.
Why 30 percent? It is the minimum forest cover required to sustain species diversity within our watershed. Conservation Halton recognizes the vital role forests play in maintaining the health of our watershed. Trees purify our air, filter our water, and protect against regional flooding. Trees provide homes for wild creatures; they shade us on hot summer days and act as natural playgrounds that boost our physical and emotional well-being. By increasing our regional forest cover, we work to sustain these benefits for future generations to enjoy.
Now in its tenth year, Trees for Watershed Health is partnering with the Town of Milton. We are calling on 300 volunteers to help plant over 2,000 native trees and shrubs at Lions Sports Park on Saturday May 2nd. The event presents a fun way for friends and families to reconnect with the urban forests that surround our homes, parks, and workplaces. By participating in this year’s planting, you will help strengthen Milton’s resilience to storm water runoff while also improving nesting sites for some of the region’s wild bird populations.
We welcome all individuals, families, and small groups to participate. No prior planting experience is required. The event is free of charge and includes lunch for all registrants. Registration is mandatory and scheduled to open at the end of March. Please visit our website over the coming weeks for more information on how to get involved.