Afforestation WinterCity YXE

Over the past year and a half, Jeff Hehn, the ambassador of the Fatbike Fatlanders Brigade, has been meeting with the various people and departments of the City of Saskatoon engaged in the WinterCity YXE strategy.

Currently the plans for growing the WinterCity campaign machine-groomed trails to include non-motorized recreational activities such as possibly fat bicycling, cross-country skiing, skijourning, snow shoeing, horse back riding, winter hiking, and sliding snowshoeing. Along with the trails, signage, waymarking sites, or kiosks may display maps, trail names, interpretative signage, trail etiquette, event and seasonal information.  “The trails in the forest are quite flat which makes for good winter riding and they seem to get the right number of riders to prevent significant ice.*

“Management of human use of trails in wild areas must be based on information relating trail quality to use. ~Weaver” To protect the vegetation, and environment trails are designed in the winter amidst the Caragana, creating safer trails, and also encouraging users to remain on the groomed trails, mitigating environmental damage. Education posted on social media, or upon waymarking signs during spring thaws will help to prevent damage to the trails and to the forest, ensuring trail maintenance.

“We want to create a more resilient economy outside of the summer and Christmas seasons,” said director of environmental and corporate initiatives Brenda Wallace.CBC

Eco-tourism is certainly growing, as is the City of Saskatoon. More and more folks are recognizing the health benefits of outdoor physical activity. The WinterCity YXE trails can be seen as a fantastic way to improve the quality of life for residents of Saskatoon and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park 344. Additionally, those visiting the City of Saskatoon, during the winter months would certainly be enchanted by the magnificent hoar frost and woodland scenes in this mixed woodland forest.

At this time, the main weakness of the Winter City YXE trail network in the afforestation areas is the fact that motorized vehicles still have access to a portion of the afforestation areas. Motorized vehicles are devastating to trails, and the hard work, time and effort put into grooming trails disappears in one instant if a motorized vehicle decides to go out “mudding”, pop 360s or dump trash in the forest. At this time this is the main conflict facing the success of the WinterCity YXE trail strategy at the afforestation area.  It is hoped that a solution to this dilemna may soon be found.

There is no doubt that good trails, offer to the public recreational enthusiast, skiier, bicyclist, snowshoer, or hiker features such as great views, diverse landscapes, and excellent proximity to both the urban neighbourhoods of Saskatoon, and the rural areas of the RM of Corman Park 344.

All, in all, trails increase both physical and mental health benefits, and the overall fitness of the user population. Families, and organizations have an opportunity to enjoy nature outdoors. Located in the city, trails afford an excellent means to educate visitors about the natural environment and surrounds. Very importantly, trails create both healthy and safe environments for the afforestation area, which, in turn creates peaceful, and enjoyable community awareness. Trails also afford a tourism opportunity, and indeed, does make Saskatoon a better place to live.

At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.
– Albert Schweitzer

A humble and grateful thank you is extended to Jeff Hehn, and the Fatbike Fatlanders Brigade Fat Fun For Fine Folks (Fat Tire Club) , for their work to create a Man of Trees trail network, and to enhance tourism within the afforestation areas. It surely may be that all fat bicycling, cross-country skiing, skijourning, snow shoeing, horse back riding, winter hiking, and sliding snowshoeing enthusiasts will surely be able to appreciate and savour the heightened expression of the forest with a well-groomed and maintained trail system.

“If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.”
~Anne Bradstreet

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Charlton, Johathan. City Hall wants to know: How can Saskatoon be more fun in the winter?” Saskatoon Star Phoenix. January 25, 2017.

Cranbrook Community forest Trail Plan Cranbrook Community Forest Society. Draft Version 10. 1/16/2016

City of Saskatoon Council Policy C09-011 Trees on City Property.

Doyle, Sabrina. Best Canadian Cities to visit in winter. These urban centres really know how to heat up the chilly months. November 10, 2016.

Environmental Leadership | Saskatoon.ca City Hall > Our Performance > Performance Dashboard > Environmental Leadership.

Feeling dreary about winter? City of Saskatoon trying to change that. New strategy designed to improve winter life, economy, accessibility, culture. CBC News. January 24, 2017

** For the Love of Winter. WinterCity Strategy Implementation Plan. The LoveofWinter-ImplementationPlan.pdf City of Edmonton. September 10, 2013.

*** For the Love of Winter Strategy for Transforming Edmonton into a World-Leading Winter City. (pdf)

Lun Liu, Hui Wang Hui Wang Hui Wang, Chunyang WuChunyang Wu. A machine learning method for the large-scale evaluation of urban visual environment. a Department of Land Economy, University Cambridge Department of Land Economy, University Cambridge School of Architecture, Tsinghua University of Architecture, Tsinghua UniversityMachine Intelligence Laboratory, Department of Engineering, University Cambridge

* Ministry of Tourism, Sport and the Arts. Ministry of Environment. Recreation Trails Strategy for British Columbia. Phase 1: Background Report Appendix 2 Survey Results. May 2007. Province of British Columbia
Published by: British Ecological Society. DOI: 10.2307/2402226. Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2402226. Page Count: 6

PotashCorp WinterShines 2017: Saskatchewan’s Premiere Winter Festival. January 28 – February 5, 2017
Saskatoon Winter City Strategy Update – City of Saskatoon

Weaver, D. Dale and T. Trampling Effects on Vegetation of the Trail Corridors of North Rocky Mountain Forests Journal of Applied Ecology. Vol. 11, No. 2 (Aug., 1974), pp. 767-772

WinterCityYXE: Saskatoon’s Winter City Strategy | Saskatoon.ca

WinterCityYXE: Saskatoon’s Winter City Strategy

WinterCityYXE Guide

WinterCityYXE interactive map

Winter Cities Shake-Up Presentation – Alternative Approaches to Fostering a Winter City in Smaller Communities January 3, 2017. Community Planning Conference Presentations.
YXE Winter City | Optimist Hill Campaign

“Your greatest gift to others is to be happy
and to radiate your happiness to the entire world.”
– Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Afforestation Workshop

“When the trees go, the rain goes, the climate deteriorates, the water table sinks, the land erodes and desert conditions soon appear” ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

Afforestation Workshop May 25, 2017 at 1:30
Afforestation Workshop May 25, 2017 at 1:30

“What do the forests bear? Soil, water and pure air–soil, water and pure air are the basis of life; this is the slogan of the Chipko (Hug to the Trees) women in India–those who work with Sunderlal Bahuguna to save the forests of the Himalayas. Sunderlal is my Guru”.~Richard St. Barbe Baker

The Wild About Saskatoon 2017 NatureCity Festival theme this year is ‘We are water: explore our prairie waterscape.’ The festival takes place with a wide assortment of events May 23-28, 2017. The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area joins the festivities Thursday afternoon May 25, 2017 between 1:30 and 3:15.  Situated in a low lying area classified as a “wetlands”, the afforestation workshop  participants will be immersed in the forest and woodlands in the southwest sector of Saskatoon.  The workshop was compiled from the books and teachings of Dr. Richard St. Barbe Baker,  L.L.D., O.B.E., humanitarian, author, silviculturist and forester.  In this way we embrace the teachings of this Baba Wya Miti ~ loving Father of Trees.

Omitakoyasin. The Omitakoyasin are the spirits of all of humanity’s ancestors, since always and for always. “We are all related.” It is important to realize that every single person who enters into our lives, from the passing stranger to those nearest and dearest to us, is present because we dreamed them here. We made a mutual agreement with each of them to connect in this time and space for the purpose of enriching and empowering our individual and collective evolution.~Lynette Hopkin

Arrive at the parking lot of the South West off leash dog park for 1:30 p.m. on Thursday May 25, 2017 should you wish to partake in this workshop activities.  Directions and map are included below.  Though the meeting place will be the SW off leash recreation area parking lot, the Afforestation Workshop will take place in the forest east of the dog park, and not in the dog park itself.

“The trees and vegetation, which cover the land surface of the Earth and delight the eye, are performing vital tasks incumbent upon the vegetable world in nature. Its presence is essential to earth as an organism. It is the first condition of all life; it is the “Skin” of the earth, for without it there can be no water and, therefore, no life.”~Richard St. Barbe Baker

Note 

There will be no actual planting or “afforestation of trees” at the location of this workshop, this afforestation workshop is so named as it takes place within an “afforestation area” – the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

For more information:

You Tube Video Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
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If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque please to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund” (MVA RSBBAA trust fund) and mail it to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area c/o Meewasin Valley Authority, 402 Third Ave S, Saskatoon SK S7K 3G5. Thank you kindly!
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Saskatoon Nature Society

Wildlife Montage. Red Winged Blackbird, White Tailed Deer Fawn, Garter Snake, JackRabbit, Mallard Ducklings, Black Crowned Night Heron
Wildlife Montage. Red Winged Blackbird, White Tailed Deer Fawn, Garter Snake, JackRabbit, Mallard Ducklings, Black Crowned Night Heron

The Saskatoon Nature Society, and the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area are very proud that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is included in the new edition of their book, “Nature and Viewing Sites In and Around Saskatoon”. The public awareness of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, Saskatoon’s Best Kept Secret, is invaluable, and is currently the new direction forward being adopted by the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

“The Saskatoon Nature Society, a charitable organization founded in 1955, brings together those interested in the natural world. Our objective is to promote the appreciation of nature and encourage a deeper knowledge of it through observation and sharing of experience.

Our society supports nature conservation projects and is an active advocate for the preservation of plant and animal habitats.The SNS is affiliated with Nature Saskatchewan and Nature Canada”SNS

A new direction has come forward for the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area; to tell the story of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area at the citizen level. Getting the story out there looks to embrace the single key concept which came forward time and time again during the meeting from all users and all stakeholders; the need to respect the Afforestation Area. 


In this regards, the Saskatoon Nature Society was way ahead in letting Saskatoon know about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area at the citizen level.  For this, the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area are deeply thankful and grateful.  It is good to know that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, an afforestation area preserved in perpetuity in 1972, is no longer an outlier nor secret, but is well and truly considered a nature and viewing site of some regard in Saskatoon.  If you have never had the chance to view the new edition of their book, “Nature and Viewing Sites In and Around Saskatoon” please do check it out, indeed.

 As the Persian Seer of the Bahai said:
‘This is the hour for the coming together, the Sons of Men.
That the Earth will become indeed a Garden of Paradise.”

I believe that this generation will either be the last to exist in any semblance of a civilized world or it will be the first to have a vision, a daring and a greatness to say:

“I will have nothing to do with this destruction of life. I will play no part in this devastation of this land. I am destined to live and work for peaceful construction for I am morally responsible for the world of today and of the generations of tomorrow.

Let TAWAMHWE-pull together-be our motto and …I pray that I may be just to the Earth below my feet, to my neighbour by my side and to the light which comes from above and within, and this wonderful world of ours may be a little more beautiful and happy for my having lived in it. ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

“This generation may either be the last to exist in any semblance of a civilized world or that it will be the first to have the vision, the bearing and the greatness to say ‘I will have nothing to do with this destruction of life, I will play no part in this devastation of the land, I am determined to live and work for peaceful construction for I am morally responsible for the world of today and the generations of tomorrow.'” ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Facebook: StBarbeBaker
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
Off leash dog park Valley Road Saskatoon!
If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque please to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund” (MVA RSBBAA trust fund) and mail it to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area c/o Meewasin Valley Authority, 402 Third Ave S, Saskatoon SK S7K 3G5. Thank you kindly!
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What is an afforestation area?

From water and earth we came, and the future of mankind on this planet will be determined by respectful or disrespectful treatment of these basic elements. ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

The present is full of opportunity. Never before in the history of the planet has mankind been given the privileges and opportunities that are at his disposal today. A great light has been raised and is penetrating the darkness of the world, but alas, too many with dust blinded eyes have yet to catch the vision. Some of us have. That is our privilege and our responsibility. ~Richard St. Barbe Baker.

What is an afforestation area?  Afforestation is the planting of trees upon land which have not contained trees previously.

Reforestation, on the other hand, is the reforestation of an existing forest which has been depleted usually because of deforestation.

Deforestation is the removal of a forest to make use of the land as farms, ranches, or neighbourhoods.

So in the case of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and the Afforestation Area Formerly known as George Genereux Park, the lands were part of  the aspen parkland biome. Aspen parkland refers to a very large area of transitional biome between prairie and boreal forest.  Aspen parkland consists of groves of aspen poplars and spruce interspersed with areas of prairie grasslands, also intersected by large stream and river valleys lined with aspen-spruce forests and dense shrubbery. This is the largest boreal-grassland transition zone in the world and is a zone of constant competition and tension as prairie and woodlands struggle to overtake each other within the parkland.

Because of afforestation, the area possesses a miraculous, and fully established mixed wood forest featuring both deciduous and evergreen trees.  It is common in the Saskatchewan eco-system to not behold a mixed forest of this stature unless one is north of the tree line or at Cypress Hills park, as both these areas are at a higher elevation.  To have a mature mixed forest with gorgeous canopy, full understorey, rich and vibrant semi-wilderness wildlife habitat corridor along with wetlands inclusive of Chappell Marsh with emergent fauna  is a true blessing and good fortune within the boundary limits of the City of Saskatoon.  This is a tribute to the City of Saskatoon parks department and the great insight of a great man, named Bert Wellman Saskatoon Director of Planning and Development who had a vision for a green belt to embrace and grace Saskatoon.

From water and earth we came, and the future of mankind on this planet will be determined by respectful or disrespectful treatment of these basic elements. ~Richard St. Barbe Baker

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com

Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

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

Facebook: South West Off Leash Recreation Area SW OLRA

Facebook: Off leash dog park Valley Road Saskatoon!

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If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque please to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund” (MVA RSBBAA trust fund) and mail it to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area c/o Meewasin Valley Authority, 402 Third Ave S, Saskatoon SK S7K 3G5. Thank you kindly!
Twitter: St Barbe Baker

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What are Ents?

“when the trees go, the rain goes, the climate deteriorates, the water table sinks, the land erodes and desert conditions soon appear.~Richard St. Barbe Baker

What are Ents?  What are Huorns?

Who shepherds the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area?

The Ents are called “the Shepherds of the Huorns”, while a Huorn are the trees of the forest. The Elves refer to Ents as Onodrim meaning “Tree-host”. Both Huorns and Ents are fantasy creatures created by J.R.R. Tolkien A diversity of races and beings  resided in Middle Earth, the setting for the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

An Ent is a fictional being ~ with the appearance of a walking and talking tree. The evolution of the Ents is thought to have occurred rendering them more and more tree-like from their shepherding duties and their desire to care for the trees (Huorns). The race of the Huorns are the those trees of “Fangorn forest,” the old forests of Middle Earth which have become animated with the ability to walk and talk.

While Ents can speak to the other races in Middle Earth, Huorns can only speak to Ents. Huorns, like Ents are capable of locomotion, and can create darkness to hide the fact that they are moving. An Ent is envisioned to be 14 feet in height, and their appearance varies depending on the trees or “Huorns” in their flock, as Ents have the height, and size specific to the type of tree that they guarded. These Ent “giants” were immortal, with the character Treebeard being the oldest creature anywhere living in Middle Earth.

Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, [and] look well to thy herds. Proverbs 27:23

As a bit of whimsy, there is even a Ent name generator online perfect to name any fantasy animated or anthropomorphic tree creatures. To view a depiction of Treebeard Tree, I am not tree, ~ Treebeard The Last March of the Ents. or Ents attack Isengard from the movie trilogy Lord of the Rings directed by Peter Jackson; The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Two Towers (2002) and The Return of the King (2003).

In Saskatoon, SOS Elms Coalition are “concerned about the health of Saskatchewan’s community tree population”. Robert White personal friend of Richard St. Barbe Baker is one of the SOS Elms Coalition members at the forefront in shepherding the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. With his keen eye, and years of experience he immediately recognized the outlook for Elms and placed a grove of Elms on his personal watch list.  SOS Elms Coalition undertakes “public education and action projects designed to involve individual citizens as well as provincial and municipal governments in the active care of community trees.” Reaching out and teaching people to care for trees and forests is similar to the Ents in the Lord of the Rings who shepherd the Huorns.

The Urban Forestry Program implemented by the City of Saskatoon has initiated a tree inventory at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area beginning in October of 2016.  “Saskatoon’s urban forest is healthy and growing –it is up to everyone to protect it. Trees help to make our communities beautiful and improve our quality of life by helping to modify our climate, reduce air pollution, protect our soil and water resources, and provide habitat for wildlife.”  Tree inventories help to establish any spring and fall tree planting programs which may be required, and identify any dead or hazardous trees for removal.  By doing tree inventories, the City’s Urban Forestry Program is able to asses its ongoing maintenance program and implement the  planning process to determine site analysis, species selection, and planting site determination for successful planting of trees (afforestation) in the upkeep of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.  The Urban Forestry Program is better able to manage and caretake the urban forest of the Afforestation Area with a tree inventory.   The inventory contains data and information regarding not only the number of trees and empty tree wells, but also the tree diameter, tree size, species of trees, recent plantings and self generating saplings, and vulnerability of the forest and the individual trees to invasive insects and disease.  This information enables the Urban Forestry Program to better manage and assess the health of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area riparian woodlands.

The Saskatoon Nature Society watches over the environment for wildlife to support ” nature conservation projects” and they are “an active advocate for the preservation of plant and animal habitats”. Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is included in the new edition “Nature Viewing Sites in and around Saskatoon (3rd edition).”

The Meewasin Valley Authority is a “conservation agency dedicated to conserving the cultural and natural resources of the South Saskatchewan River Valley”, and “one of Meewasin’s primary goals is to help maintain a vibrant & healthy river valley”. The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area has a large area within the MVA jurisdiction, The West Swale Wetlands, and Chappell marsh of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area drain into the South Saskatchewan River.

It is thus that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area does indeed have shepherds watching over the trees of the afforestation area preserved in perpetuity in 1972, as well as guardians of the semi-wilderness wildlife habitat, and a watchdog for the conservation and preservation of the environment.

This March 3, World Wildlife Day, and everyday, please take an active role personally as a shepherd of the biodiversity in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.  Thank you kindly.

“Every flock of the sheep of God which is protected under the shadow of the Divine Shepherd will not be scattered, but when the sheep are dispersed from the flock, they will necessarily be caught and torn by the wolf.

Therefore, it is incumbent upon you to flock together! It is incumbent upon you to be united! It is incumbent upon you to expose yourselves to the fragrances of God at every time and moment!” ~ Abdu’l-Baha, Tablets of Abdu’l-Baha v1, p. 184

“What do the forests bear? Soil, water and pure air–soil, water and pure air are the basis of life.”~ Richard St. Barbe Baker the Chipko Andolan slogan

“when the trees go, the rain goes, the climate deteriorates, the water table sinks, the land erodes and desert conditions soon appear.~Richard St. Barbe Baker

For more information:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Facebook: StBarbeBaker
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque please to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund” (MVA RSBBAA trust fund) and mail it to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area c/o Meewasin Valley Authority, 402 Third Ave S, Saskatoon SK S7K 3G5. Thank you kindly!
Twitter: St Barbe Baker
Pinterest richardstbarbeb

I am the good shepherd, and know my [sheep], and am known of mine ~ John 10:14

Afforestation Heritage

Saskatchewan Heritage defines Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) as that which “encompasses the underlying fabric of our lives — stories, skills, traditions, ways of doing things, ways of speaking, and ways of interacting with each other and the environment.”Sup>Source “Living Heritage are those values, beliefs, and ways of living we inherited from past generations that we still use to understand the present and make choices for the future.” Heritage Saskatchewan The City of Saskatoon has a true and rich heritage as can be seen in the Planning process of 1960. The conventional wisdom shown by Bert Wellman, Saskatoon Planning Department, A. L. Ligtemoet, Assistant Parks Superintendent City Planner Bill Graham certainly honours the time-honoured tradition and legacy set by the great foresters who stood before them, Richard St. Barbe Baker and John Evelyn.

What is happening at the afforestation areas to safeguard the legacy of Richard St. Barbe Baker and nurture the concept of Living Heritage?

How can you beome involved in curating the Living Heritage of the afforestation areas in the southwest sectors of Saskatoon?

How can you create opportunities in your organisation or your class to relate the stores of the afforestation areas in Saskatoon and Richard St. Barbe Baker?

How do the afforestation areas in Saskatoon, these semi-wilderness urban forests, impact your personal cultural identity, and the concept of Saskatoon’s urban regional parks?

A story from Richard St. Barbe Baker’s international organisation Men of the Trees journal “Trees”; We have saved for posterity many trees and woodlands, besides influencing large-scale re-afforestation both at home and over-sees. But for our aid, the finest Redwood groves of California would have fallen to the axe.

John Evelyn, FRS (31 October 1620 – 27 February 1706) was an English writer, horticulturist, vegetarian, gardener and diarist.
John Evelyn, FRS (31 October 1620 – 27 February 1706) was an English writer, horticulturist, vegetarian, gardener and diarist.

We would like to think that the Spirit of John Evelyn lives on in the Men of the Trees of today and through our TREE – PLANTING FUND we are endeavouing to help to restore our tree cover. With the co-operation of affiliated nurserymen, throughout the country trees are being raised each year for planting during Arbour Week, November 4th-10th and onwards.
It is not sufficiently realized that many of todays major problems are directly due to ignorance of the importance of trees. Millions of acres of rich farmland are now deserts as a result of the wholesale destruction of trees and forests. The Sahara of Africa, the dustbowls of America and Austraila, and erosion in New Zealand are tragic evidence of the results of this ignorance.

It is a race between education and catastrophe. …With Ruskin they belive that: “God has lend us the earth for our life. It is a great entail. It belongs as much to those who are to come after us as to us and we have no right, by anything we do or neglect, to involve them in any unnecessary penalties, or deprive them of the benefit which was in our power to bequeath.” University of Saskatchewan, University Archives & Special Collections, Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds, MG 71.

John Evelyn, FRS (31 October 1620 – 27 February 1706) was an English writer, horticulturist, vegetarian, gardener and diarist. Evelyn wrote a treatise named Sylva, or A Discourse of Forest-Trees , even as early as 1664, Evelyn was aware of the need that a growing army required trees, economy and forestry went hand in hand. This book, Sylva, served as the foremost text on forestry, and even in contemporary times, is still being re-printed.

Sylva, or A Discourse of Forest-Trees 1664
Sylva, or A Discourse of Forest-Trees 1664

The introduction, written by John Nisbet states; “It is unnecessary to say much about this charming classic of Forestry, of whose various excellences the reader can herein judge for himself. Gracefully written in nervous English and in a cultured style, ornately embellished according to the then prevailing custom by apt quotations from the Latin poets, it contains an enormous amount of information in the shape of legends and of facts ascertained by travel, of observation, and of experience. No man of his time could possibly have been better qualified than Evelyn for undertaking the special duty laid upon him; and he carried out his task in a brilliant manner. Sylva soon ran into several editions. …The publication of Sylva gave an enormous stimulus to planting in Britain, the benefits from which were subsequently reaped at the end of the XVIII and the beginning of the XIX century…Apart from the planting done in the royal woods and forests, details of Evelyn’s diary shew that he was frequently called upon to give advice with regard to laying out private plantations,—as well as of ornamental gardens, on which subject he was also considered one of the leading authorities of the time.”

As the international organisation “Men of the Trees” created by Richard St. Barbe Baker, treasured the treatise, Sylva, or A Discourse of Forest-Trees and walked in the footsteps of Richard St. Barbe Baker and John Evelyn. So, should the current generation learn from our past generations, and follow in the footsteps of these two foresters. Similarly, the role of the City of Saskatoon parks department, planting the 660 acres of afforestation areas in 1972 and preserving them in perpetuity, is truly a part of the City of Saskatoon’s rich heritage.

A green belt for the city starts with Bert Wellman, Saskatoon Planning Department, who walked around Saskatoon’s perimeter choosing high spots of land for scenic beauty. Together with City Planner Bill Graham they worked on parkways and planted trees for the 1960 Circle Drive Parkway at these sites. 1972, A. L. Ligtemoet, Assistant Parks Superintendent sets before council that these first 660 acres of afforestation areas be kept in perpetuity. The city pioneer’s Wellman, Graham, and Ligtemoet surely did, indeed follow in the footsteps of the conventional wisdom set down as building blocks in the forestry profession by Baker and Evelyn.

“Safeguarding our Living Heritage is accomplished through documentation, celebration, transmission of knowledge and skills, and adopting sustainable practices and processes…It sounded the trumpet of alarm to the nation on the condition of their woods and forests.’”Heritage Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan Heritage week February 20-24 2017
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52° 06′ 106° 45′

For more information:

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.
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Facebook: StBarbeBaker
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
Contact the Meewasin Valley Authority in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. The MVA has begun a Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund. If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund (MVA RSBBAA trust fund)”. Please and thank you!
Twitter: StBarbeBaker