With Arrival of Spring, Biodiversity Projects Resume

On a very nice, early spring day, 11 Toronto Club members carried two of the boot brush frames built by John Borley to the Todd Bardes Meadowlands Side Trail. We installed them so that they are very visible to anyone passing or entering the side trail. The accompanying sign reads, “Help Stop the Spread of Invasive Species: Brush Off Your Boots.” We hope people will stop to read the sign, brush off their boots, and consider the message before continuing on their way.

Next, we re-seated the Todd Bardes Memorial bench on the side trail. It had shifted and was leaning too far forward for anyone to use it.  We checked on the disease tolerant Elm trees that we planted last fall (reported on in an earlier E-Notes). All appear to have survived the winter and are budding.  It’s a bit too early to tell how the wildflower plantings that we planted last fall will do this year. But they appeared to be undisturbed (except for one small plot that squirrels appear to have dug up).

We picked up the third boot brush frame and met again on 4th Line where the Main Trail crosses next to the former junkyard.  This brush station was installed to be seen by hikers walking south and entering a long stretch of woodlands crossing the Speyside Sanctuary, Speyside Woods, Opavsky, and Robertson properties, and over to 15 Sideroad. We plan to install a fourth brush station on the Robertson property to be seen by hikers heading north.

Since we found Dog Strangling Vine on the Speyside Sanctuary property just last year, we hope that the boot brushes will actually be used by hikers and will help prevent the further spread of invasive species throughout this area.

The Biodiversity Team is planning to do garlic mustard pulling work parties this spring. Watch for our invitations to come and join us for the day’s outing as we work together to nurture and restore biodiversity along the Bruce Trail.

Rose-Mary Mitter, Land Stewardship Director, Toronto Bruce Trail Club