The life of a tree is a life of service

Urban Forestry Offices of Canadian Civic Governments~ Saskatoon ~”
Trees play a significant role in our quality of life and provide a positive effect by beautifying our city for residents and tourists to enjoy. All trees that grow in Saskatoon are part of the urban forest including trees on both private and public property.” Canadian Forests


The citizens who live in Saskatoon have a keen and vibrant interest in Saskatoon’s urban forest! The City of Saskatoon has a legacy of honouring forests.  This year for the 2017 National Forest Week,  September 24th to 30ththe theme is Canada’s Forests: Our Stories, Our Future Celebrating Canada’s Forests!  What are some of the City of Saskatoon’s forest stories?

  1. The SOS Elms Coalition has published two City of Saskatoon tree tour booklets, one in 2004 and an update in 2015
  2. The Sutherland Forest Nursery Station supplied about 150 million trees across Saskatchewan to homesteaders in the early twentieth century.  This nursery has become the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park in 1968 and is today honoured as a National Historic site.
  3. Saskatoon also is host to an “Enchanted Forest”   The Enchanted Forest glowing is a time when the visitors to the Enchanted Forest become tender and enamoured with love and kindred spirit.  It is a celebration of the holiday season embracing the very idea of loving others, embracing childhood memories and becoming as a child enraptured in delight again.
  4. The Patterson’s Garden Arboretum is honoured by the Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI), is part of Canada’s Garden Route and is treasured in Saskatoon’s Register of Historic Places and is a priority of the  City of Saskatoon Municipal Heritage Advisory Committee (MHAC) 
  5. The Fred Mitchell Memorial Gardens  is another gem of Saskatoon, a forest, placed by City of Saskatoon residents on Saskatoon’s Register of Historic Places.  
  6. Saskatoon’s Memorial Avenue was begun by the Saskatoon branch of the Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire that who stated that:“A tree is a living memorial often more enduring than marble or bronze; a tree is a thing of beauty and of inspiration — a living token of the wonder and glory of nature– a symbol of service– for the life of a tree is a life of service, even the end of life is not the end of a tree’s service; to the contrary, the end of a life opens new fields of service which add immeasurably to our civilization, our culture, and our happiness; therefore, is not a tree a fitting symbol for those valiant men who gave their lives for the service of their country and who died that humanity might continue to live in civilization, in culture, and in happiness?”
  7. The Meewasin Memorial Forest within the Gabriel Dumont Park is a living tribute to bring comfort to the family, and honour of a dearly departed loved one.  Richard St. Barbe Baker, himself had spoken to his close friends of wishes to be fulfilled on his passing.  One wish was that a large tree would grace his burial site.  When Baker ~ the founder of the International Tree Foundation (Men of the Trees Organization)  died on 9 June 1982 during his visit to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, he planted his last tree on the grounds of the University of Saskatchewan where he was one of the first students.   Baker is, indeed, buried near at a site with two large spruce trees in Woodlawn Cemetery, Saskatoon.  *Let children walk with Nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams of our blessed star, and they will learn that death is stingless indeed, and as beautiful as life. ~John Muir
  8. The Meewasin Valley Authority, as well, has initiated the “Plant a Tree” Program.  “Planting and growing increasing quantities of trees is the scientific solution to Earth’s environmental dilemma.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker  Not only did Baker plant a tree in a public ceremony before his passing by some estimates, organizations Richard St. Barbe Baker founded or assisted have been responsible for planting at least 26 trillion trees, internationally.   One of the organistions is the International Tree Foundation which began in Kenya with the first Watu wa Miti, or Men of the Trees. These forest scouts promised that they would indeed protect the native forest, plant ten native trees each year, and take care of trees everywhere.

This preceding listing of eight stories honouring the forests and trees of Saskatoon is by no means complete, thee is a resplendent River Valley along the South Saskatchewan River, and the city of Saskatoon is bedecked with an urban forest of boulevards, parks, named heritage parks, municipal reserves and green spaces.

Amongst the honour of forests and green spaces is the story of two more forests the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and the adjoining afforestation area “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park in the City of Saskatoon

1960  the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park and a third afforestation area lands were bought

1972 sees drought resistant trees, Scotch Pine, Caragana, Elm, Balsam Poplar, Colorado Blue Spruce planted in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and the”George Genereux” Urban Regional Park and the third afforestation area. In total 355 acres of afforestation areas were planted that year.  In 1973, 355 additional acres are planted.  Originally 2,300 acres were envisioned.

1972, A. L. Ligtemoet, Assistant Parks Superintendent sets before council that these first  660 acres of afforestation areas be kept in perpetuity.Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and the adjoining afforestation area “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park are part of these first 660 acres along with a third afforestation area on the other side of the river south of Gabriel Dumont Park, and in 1972 west of the golf course.

1978 Oct 19 Name “Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area” brought forward to city council; Dec 28, 1978 proposed that the area become a park; Jan 2, 1979, this is recommended by council.  The name George Genereux is also brought forward.

1985 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is dedicated June 15

…today it is the duty of every thinking being to live, and to serve not only his own day and generation, but also generations unborn by helping to restore and maintain the green glory of the forests of the earth.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker

Do you know of another Saskatoon forest which is special to you, and bears a particular story.   Please take time to share your story as well as the stories listed above.  Wouldn’t it be fantastic to have 150 Forest Stories of Saskatoon in honour of Canada’s 150 birthday?
 2017 National Forest Week,  September 24th to 30ththe theme is Canada’s Forests: Our Stories, Our Future Celebrating Canada’s Forests!

Come to the woods, for here is rest. There is no repose like that of the green deep woods. Sleep in forgetfulness of all ill.     

John Muir

For directions as to how to drive to “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park

For directions on how to drive to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

For more information:

Blairmore Sector Plan Report; planning for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area,  George Genereux Urban Regional Park and West Swale and areas around them inside of Saskatoon city limits

P4G Saskatoon North Partnership for Growth The P4G consists of the Cities of Saskatoon, Warman, and Martensville, the Town of Osler and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park; planning for areas around the afforestation area and West Swale outside of Saskatoon city limits

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city. 52° 06′ 106° 45′
Part SE 23-36-6 – Afforestation Area – 241 Township Road 362-A
Part SW 23-36-6 – SW Off-Leash Recreation Area (Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area ) – 355 Township Road 362-A
S ½ 22-36-6 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (West of SW OLRA) – 467 Township Road 362-A
NE 21-36-6 “George Genereux” Afforestation Area – 133 Range Road 3063
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page:
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Where is the George Genereux Urban Regional Park (Afforestation Area)? with map

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Facebook Group Page: Users of the George Genereux Urban Regional Park

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Facebook: South West OLRA

Twitter: StBarbeBaker

Please help protect / enhance /commemorate your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail)

Support the afforestation areas with your donation or membership ($20.00/year).  Please donate by paypal using the e-mail friendsafforestation AT, or by using e-transfers  Please and thank you!  Your donation and membership is greatly appreciated.  Members e-mail your contact information to be kept up to date!

QR Code FOR PAYPAL DONATIONS to the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc.
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Membership : $20.00 CAD – yearly
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“St. Barbe’s unique capacity to pass on his enthusiasm to others. . . Many foresters all over the world found their vocations as a result of hearing ‘The Man of the Trees’ speak. I certainly did, but his impact has been much wider than that. Through his global lecture tours, St. Barbe has made millions of people aware of the importance of trees and forests to our planet.” Allan Grainger

“We forget that we owe our existence to the presence of Trees. As far as forest cover goes, we have never been in such a vulnerable position as we are today. The only answer is to plant more Trees – to Plant Trees for Our Lives.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker

“Act. Don’t react. See a need, fix it first. Worry about the details later. If you wait until you are asked you have just missed a golden opportunity. They are fleeting and rare.” Philip Wollen founder of Winsome Kindness Trust


Author: stbarbebaker

This website is about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area - an urban regional park of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. The hosts are the stewards of the afforestation area. The afforestation area received its name in honour of the great humanitarian, Richard St. Barbe Baker. Richard St. Barbe Baker (9 October 1889 – 9 June 1982) was an English forester, environmental activist and author, who contributed greatly to worldwide reforestation efforts. As a leader, he founded an organization, Men of the Trees, still active today, whose many chapters carry out reforestation internationally. {Wikipedia} Email is StBarbeBaker AT to reach the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

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