Paul Hanley presents St. Barbe

Images~University of Saskatchewan,
University Archives & Special Collections,
Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds, MG 71

Richard St. Barbe Baker presented by Paul Hanley [YouTube]

Transcript follows in this article

YouTube https://youtu.be/DH-wg7-IBPw

Celebrating National Tree Day September 26, 2018
and
the 40th Anniversary Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Introducing St. Barbe Baker from the biographical book; Man of the Trees. Richard St. Barbe Baker, the First Global Conservationist. By Paul Hanley Foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales Introduction by Jane Goodall ~ Written by Paul Hanley environment awareness promoter, activist, free lance writer, speaker, and author

Transcription is as follows:

This is Paul Hanley, the guest speaker of the evening.

And we also have Renny Grilz from the Meewasin Valley Authority who has come to introduce him and say a few words about Paul Hanley other than what you already know kind of thing about him So I would like to introduce Renny to you then

Thank you Julia

Thanks everyone

So the wind has died down. Really good.

So thank you for the invite.

And I am Renny Grilz Resource Management Officer with the Meewasin, and Meewasin’s been involved with part of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area since the 80’s This half of the afforestation area falls under our conservation zone. We don’t do much direct management but we have been working with a lot of volunteer stewards like Julia and Jeff with the Fat Tire people and they’ve been doing a great job keeping this place clean and looking ship shape – So really appreciate that Thanks a lot Julia.

With Paul – Paul and I were here on a volunteer event four summers ago three summers ago. Julia had organized the event out on the west side of the Richard St Barbe Baker and cleaning up some of the garbage and it was amazing how much garbage we were finding and how much we pulled out, we had our truck and trailer and we filled it several times.

However what was interesting, was that as we started getting further back into the bush

we were starting to notice this area becoming more wild and more naturalized So this area was planted in about the ’70s – 1972. and what was interesting was that you start wandering through the afforestation area you could start seeing a forest eco-system forming. You know there’s evidence of woodpeckers. This spring, the nature society came out for a bit of a bio-blitz and they found yellow lady slipper which is an orchid and a rare plant and they found that over that way [pointing to the east side of the SW OLRA] I had one of my summer students come out afterwards and she found some more .

So when you think about the work that Richard St. Barbe Baker did – so he planted trees in the prairies – he planted trees around the world – and its more than just a tree, you know he created ecosystems. And this is a site that’s forming its own eco-system right on the edge of the city.

My first introduction to the site was in early 2000, when I was working for Ducks Unlimited and we bought the land right across the road – Chappell Marsh – and at that time it was an overgrazed pasture and there was a former mushroom factory there they used the old acreages there, they used to make mushrooms there – a mushroom farm. And also there was shotgun shells. So it was sort of a different feel to that site, and now you look at the site and its a beautiful wildlife theme- nature built itself there

So its interesting coming out to these areas and you explore them and you get a re-connection to the land and a re-connection to the forest.

With Paul and his work, Paul has been quite involved with Meewasin over the years, has been a strong advocate for Meewasin has written quite a few things about Meewasin, and we really appreciate it and we are all excited to hear about Paul’s new book.

Richard St. Barbe Baker, Meewasin has recognized him quite a few times in different things. We have plaques for him down in the river valley there’s a memorial as well, and I think his legacy will definitely live on especially in Saskatoon. With that, I will pass it back to you.

Thank you very much.

Paul Hanley, this is someone who personally knew Richard St. Barbe Baker and now he has delved into a bit more of the biography and I’ll pass it over to you.

Thank you Julia, Thank you Renny,

So, it’s good to be here with you folks and Ill tell you a bit about Richard St. Barbe Baker in my new book,

I also wrote the 25 year history of the Meewasin Valley Authority,

St Barbe Baker did make a little appearance in that.

So this place is named after him and I guess he is kind of to me like a conservation super hero – starting in the 1920s, from about 1922 to 1982 when he died he was just on a world wide tour constantly traveling everywhere encouraging people to plant trees to save the planet.

I think possibly he was one of the first people to do that on a world wide scale, so that’s why I called him the first Global Conservationist.

So today, we think of people like Jane Goodall, and David Suzuki, and they are known everywhere for their work. He was the first person like that who was trying to raise consciousness among something like 100 countries he traveled. He started the first environmental non-governmental organization- it went global – it’s called the Men of the Trees its now the International Tree Foundation, and he started that in 1922 in Kenya. At one point it had 5,000 members in 108 countries. It was quite a legacy he started.

One of the things I find very interesting is the impact that he had on a number of people through little things that he did. So for example he would go and give little talks like this to people, and do radio interviews, and newspaper interviews, and some people heard those things and went on to make a great difference. For example there is a fellow named Tony Rinaldo and he was an Australian. One time he was with his father, and they were visiting a big farm and he noticed in the shed a great big pile of books, and on the top of this pile was a book called “Sahara Challenge” by Richard St. Barbe Baker and he picked up the book and it inspired him to become a forester. He went to Niger later and developed a whole new way of reforesting the desert, and working with the farmers there, they were able to reforest 12 million acres of the desert in Nigeria.

And Scott Poynton is another person with the same story, when he was fifteen heard a radio broadcast with Richard St. Barbe Baker – was inspired to become a forester, and started something called the forest trust, and what they did was they got the furniture industry to change all of their wood purchases towards sustainable forestry and now they’ve gone on to industry after industry working with them to change their practices towards sustainable wood management.

And there’s a number of stories like that.

One of the most interesting is a guy named ‎Felix Finkbeiner and he started when he was nine years old he had a school project and he was supposed to write about the environment. he heard Richard St Barbe Baker and Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai who were both doing the same kind of work promoting tree planting and he wrote this paper and then he started an organization for children called Plant for the Planet. Over the years they have developed a whole program where they have child tree ambassadors and he is a really good publicist so he started working with people like Harrison Ford, Prince Ranier of Monaco, and they have this great campaign where they are standing there and have their hands over their mouth, and stop talking and start planting.

And these kids really got something going and now he is nineteen years old and his program has taken over the United Nations environment programs, tree planting effort, and he’s supposed to be planting a billion trees, and they changed the name to a Trillion Trees. And their goal is to plant one trillion trees There is about 3-4 trillion trees in the world, so now we are talking about a major tree planting effort here. They planted 15 billion trees so far and again inspired by Richard St. Barbe Baker.

So I find it really interesting how sometimes its the little things that we do have more impact than the big things that we do. So he tried in the 1950s to create a massive programme to reforest the Sahara Desert ’cause He believed that it used to be forest. He did an expedition through the desert, drove though it in a vehicle, found tree stumps in the middle of the desert and so on, so he started this campaign. And he said we should build a great green wall across the Sahel region of the Sahara but nobody would listen to him, they thought he was crazy. But today, they are planting a great green wall across the Sahara and some countries like Niger are doing a really good job of it.

So some of his ideas were way out there, at the time, and he was kind of like a voice crying in the wilderness, and people didn’t listen, but some of his ideas are taking hold and are happening around the world.

His organization Men of the Trees, which is now called in Australia, is called Trillion Trees as well.

They had, for example, the Guinness Book of World Records, for the most trees ever planted in an hour – 150 thousand trees – So they had this massive – all these students out to plant trees.

Just some of the impacts that have been felt.

Then, of course, there is his connection to Saskatoon.

When he was a young man he came here to decided to homestead and he came to Beaver Creek, He failed as a homesteader but he also became one of the first students at the University of Saskatchewan and was a lumberjack up at Big River which was at the time one of the largest sawmills in the British Empire, and he saw all of the bad forestry practices and became aware of them. That was one of the triggers he had for becoming a forester. He also spent a lot of time with people from Whitecap Dakota First Nation, which is not too far from Beaver Creek and he said a lot of his inspiration came from listening to their stories and so on. And throughout his life he was very connected with indigenous people. In Kenya when he went there, he became the first white person to become inducted into their secret society of elders in the Kikuyu tribe.

And he became very involved with the Maori and so on.

So basically from the time he was a little boy, just a little toddler, he was planting trees with his father who was a nurseryman, and he was here in Saskatoon in 1982 to plant his last tree, he was in a wheelchair, he got up from the wheelchair, and helped a bunch of children plant a tree which is now marked on the Meewasin trail right by the Diefenbaker Centre – his last tree- and a couple of days later he died, and he is buried in Saskatoon.

So anyways, that is some of his story, and I can answer questions, or talk some more, but its kind of cool.

That’s really awesome. I learned quite a bit of stuff I realized I hadn’t known about him before. That’s very awesome. Let’s say thank you to Paul. Let Richard Kerbes say a couple of words then if you guys want questions to anybody, either Renny, Richard or Paul you can ask them, but why Richard Kerbes is out, he is representing the SOS Elms Coalition. And I believe that one of the things when Richard St. Barbe Baker wanted to do on his last trip to Saskatoon was to try to establish a branch of the International Tree Foundation here, and SOS Elms Coalition is the advocate for the trees in and around Saskatoon. They are a bunch of foresters and grass roots people that have joined the group and so I’ll leave it over to Richard to introduce the SOS Elms Coalition and if you wish to say anything regarding Paul Hanley too.

Thank you Julia. We owe a lot to Julia. She’s the one who really brought the afforestation areas here to our attention. Because of course its a big job to try to educate on the urban forest, and this was a little corner that has been preserved and and more or less forgotten, and thanks to Julia for her efforts.

Its been many many community associations and green groups, a big group effort [from many wonderful community members, indeed].

Certainly in the spirit of St Barbe..

We started in ’92 which is about 10 years after St Barbe’s death, and he was certainly in our minds when we started- he was well known. One of our early members was Robert White – a friend of yours Paul – and on and off he was a great and important advocate and supporter for us, and he brought along quite a lot of help from the Baha’i community as well, and its unfortunate that Robert couldn’t be here tonight.

And I must apologize for getting here late, circumstances beyond my control.

In any case. We started as a citizen’s group to advocate for the American Elm in particular. We since broadened and covering the whole of the urban forest, both the planted trees and the wild trees in Saskatoon. In ’92 when we started, Dutch Elm disease had just entered into the south eastern corner of Saskatchewan and it was a contagion killing American Elm, and not much was being done by either provincial or municipal governments both places. So we took on this task We had a very dynamic president in our first five years. She literally traveled all over the southeast of the province to promote awareness and the need for action. And our efforts did lead to both the provincial government, and the City of Saskatoon really increased their effort for going into monitoring for Dutch Elm disease. It’s of course a hopeless case for the wild stands of Elm, but in our communities of Saskatchewan we have lost a lot of American Elm to Dutch Elm disease, but Saskatoon is very special, because we have only had one case here, it was probably a … fighting a … so that’s one feather in our cap but of course the battle is never over.

There is so many threats to our urban forest as if it wasn’t enough for natural threats like Dutch Elm Disease and other pests. We have several on our horizon. and things like the Cottony Ash Psyllid (Psyllopsis discrepans) which has been killing our Ash trees. On top of that, its a continual battle with various governmental authorities to regulate infill construction because its a good thing to have high density in the central part of the city, but the centre part of the city is where the old mature trees are as well.

Its a continuing job we have in lobbying. In any case, we have a number of projects we have carried out. The most recent is, we have a tree tour guide to the special and unusual or especially nice specimens of trees in the City of Saskatoon. So if any of you are interested, I am happy to give you a copy, And of course I am happy to take your name if you would like to join or join our mailing list or join – our membership is only $10 a year. You can have the satisfaction, as Julia has implied, we are here in the spirit of St. Barbe and Julia pointed it out to me – I didn’t realize that in his last visit here St. Barbe had specifically noted that for historical, for nostalgic reasons, since this is where he really started his appreciation of trees, that we feel kind of honoured, though its not official, that we are carrying on what he promoted his whole life to. So thank you very much.

Thank you Richard.

I think we have three awesome speakers here on behalf of National Tree Day, Paul Hanley is a great environmentalist and brings a lot of attention to environmental concerns, and he has done an excellent of Richard St. Barbe Baker, and Richard and the SOS Elms Coalition is doing a great job preserving our trees in the City of Saskatoon and surrounding area, and Renny representing the Meewasin Valley Authority, if it wasn’t for them this area wouldn’t be managed, and the river bank wouldn’t be a phenomenal place with all the trails and the Cranberry Flats, and Beaver Creek all that wonderful stuff, so lets give another big round of applause to all our wonderful speakers here today, and thank you all also for coming out, and I think what you come out – it turned out we didn’t have snow today, it turned out to be not too bad of a day, the wind has come down, and thank you all of you to appreciate National Tree Day, and to see the Afforestation Area.

And Paul when is your next showing, is that McNally Robinson?

Book Launch: Man of the Trees. Richard St. Barbe Baker, the First Global Conservationist. By Paul Hanley Foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales Introduction by Jane Goodall

November 20 is the launch at McNally.

So if anybody wants to hear a speech maybe a bit longer, and maybe inside, and would you have your slide show at that time.

Yes.

And at that time you would have a slide show.

And let people know about that. Spread the word.

Thanks for inviting me.

Thanks for coming.

Thank you guys for coming as well.

That book, I did a course on plants through the historical and social script of the plants and that book surfaced, and was given to the class so you can go and find the oldest tree in town, and the biggest tree in town, and there’s an address.

Isn’t it awesome.

Richard St. Barbe Baker presented by Paul Hanley

YouTube https://youtu.be/DH-wg7-IBPw

The average citizen has yet to learn the importance of Forestry…the man in the street does not know that the presence of Forests, in reasonably proportionate areas, is vital to human health and in order to stay the process of the disintegration of the surface of the land….Happily the solution of the Problem is at hand.”   ~University of Saskatchewan,University Archives & Special Collections,Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds, MG 71

Book Launch: Man of the Trees. Richard St. Barbe Baker, the First Global Conservationist. By Paul Hanley Foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales Introduction by Jane Goodall

Paul Hanley, Saskatoon, SK

Paul Hanley Eleven on You Tube

Paul Hanley Meewasin Conservation Award 2014

Paul Hanley, Eleven Billion People Will Change Everything.

Paul Hanley, Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Page 1

Paul Hanley, Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Page 2

Visit Paul Hanley’s website:
http://www.elevenbillionpeople.com/

To learn more about U of R Press, visit:
https://www.uofrpress.ca/

To check out Sask Books’ Book store, visit:
http://www.skbooks.com

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

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Tagged Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Twitter: St Barbe Baker

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)”.  Post to MVA 402 Third Avenue South Saskatoon, SK S7K 3G5  Please and thank you!

Membership in the Saskatoon Nature Society  “supports nature conservation projects and [the society] is an active advocate for the preservation of plant and animal habitats”.

Please contemplate joining the SOS Elms coalition ~ an active group interested in forest management~ or make a donation to “Save our Saskatchewan” [SOS] Elms ~ leave a message to support the afforestation area  😉

1./ Learn.

2./ Experience

3./ Do Something: ***

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February 1, 2018

The day has arrived!

February 1 2018
February 1 2018

It is definitely on the horizon!  Around and about February 1, 2018 is the date which the City of Saskatoon long range planners are looking at for a public consultation meeting in regards to The Blairmore Sector Management Area Land Use Plan.  There are amendments and changes being made to the Blairmore Sector which affect the afforestation areas.

SaveTheDate

The City of Saskatoon does not wish to miss any interested stakeholders who may wish to voice their opinions on the afforestation areas and the Blairmore Sector changes. Therefore, the long range planners are seeking to contact those persons and organisations who may have an interest in the South West Sector afforestation areas – NOTE now moved over to the Blairmore Sector Neighbourhood long range planning process. The  West Swale Afforestation Areas include the South West Off Leash Recreation Area SWOLRA ~ a part of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area  located north of Chappell Marsh Conservation Area, and south of the CN rail yards, the ‘George Genereux’ Urban Regional Park west of the Pike Lake Highway, and the unnamed afforestation area located east of the SW dog park, and west of the Civic Operations Centre (bus barns) [this unnamed forest is generally also referred to as the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area as well].

“Man must resuscitate his planet with trees, his heart with faith.”
~Richard St. Barbe Baker

Look forward to seeing you’se at the meeting

“Similar souls wander in the similar places! They may not know each other, but often they touch the same winds, they step on the same leaves, their looks are lost in the same horizons!”― Mehmet Murat ildan Turkish quotes

2018Meeting
Blairmore Sector Public Engagement Meeting

 

Additional information

Map of Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Map of ‘George Genereux’ Urban Regional Park

About the Afforestation Areas ~ a history

Blairmore Sector Plans City of Saskatoon

City of Saskatoon mission, vision, and strategy | City planning process.

Blairmore Sector Map

City of Saskatoon projected Growth including Blairmore Sector

Saskatoon City Neighbourhood Boundaries Map

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. 52° 06′ 106° 45′
Addresses:
Part SE 23-36-6 – Afforestation Area – 241 Township Road 362-A
Part SE 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: 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 at 402 Third Avenue South Saskatoon, SK S7K 3G5 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
Please contemplate joining the SOS Elms coalition or make a donation to SOS Elms ~ leave a message to support the afforestation area  😉

“The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.”― Christopher McCandless

 

What is the West Swale?

Geological formation during The Pleistocene Era

Geology of the Yorath Island Spillway After the Flood.

The geological formation of the West Swale occurred during the Pleistocene era from waters cascading out of the glacial l North Saskatchewan River valley, which is quite different from the formation of the North East Swale, which was formed from glacial ice waters in the South Saskatchewan River Valley subsidence.

The West Swale earth science features include glaciofluvial Iandforms created by meltwater channels during Pleistocene glacial drainage. The afforestation area formerly known as George Genereux Urban Regional Park, Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area and Maple Grove at the West Swale Confluence are all provincially significant examples of a landscape typifying fluvioglacial erosion.

Meltwater channels are unique and significant as they possess characteristics which distinguish them from conventional river valleys. The low lying area of the West Swale does, indeed, display a fascinating geological record of the last stages of the Great Ice Age. On a walk in the Richard St. Barb Baker Afforestation Area, or the Urban Regional Park formerly named George Genereux park, and spend an absolutely unforgettable day 2.6 million years in the making.

The West Swale lands are of imperative value to surrounding rural agricultural lands at the present moment, but the lands also provide flood relief in the South West sector in Saskatoon. There are notable and significant geological features providing scientific, educational, historical and aesthetic landscape importance to the city of Saskatoon, the province of Saskatchewan, the nation of Canada.

What happened during the Pleistocene era?

2,588,000 to 11,700 years ago

“During the Quaternary period, between 2 and 3 million years ago, the prairies were covered by a glacier, the Laurentide ice sheet.

Northern hemisphere glaciation during the last ice ages. The accumulation of 3 to 4 kilometers (1.9 to 2.5 mi) thick ice sheets caused a sea level lowering of about 120 meters (390 ft)
Northern hemisphere glaciation during the last ice ages. The accumulation of 3 to 4 kilometers (1.9 to 2.5 mi) thick ice sheets caused a sea level lowering of about 120 meters (390 ft)

It was 3 kilometers (1.9 mi) thick which advanced and receded several times across the prairies. There were multiple glaciations affecting the Saskatchewan area during the Pre-Illinoian, Illinioan, and Wisconsin stages of the last Ice Age.” Geology These were the major glaciations, there were other glaciations summarized as follows.

Glacial Lake Agassiz A glacial lake is a lake with origins in a melted glacier. They are formed when a glacier erodes the land, and then melts, filling the hole or space that it has created. Near the end of the last glacial period, roughly 10,000 years ago, glaciers began to retreat. A retreating glacier often left behind large deposits of ice in hollows between drumlins or hills. As the ice age ended, these melted to create lakes.
Glacial Lake Agassiz A glacial lake is a lake with origins in a melted glacier. They are formed when a glacier erodes the land, and then melts, filling the hole or space that it has created. Near the end of the last glacial period, roughly 10,000 years ago, glaciers began to retreat. A retreating glacier often left behind large deposits of ice in hollows between drumlins or hills. As the ice age ended, these melted to create lakes.

Ice retreated, and drainage occurred to the north, creating Glacial lakes in low lying areas. Glacial Lake Saskatoon I situated in the northern Saskatoon Lowland and lower areas of the Elstow Basin. When the northern outlet of Lake Saskatoon lowered, the South Saskatchewan River Valley began replacing Glacial Lake Saskatoon I. A broad plain called the Cory Plain was created in the area south west of Saskatoon. Cory Plain features cut off meander loops, ox-bow lakes and geological features showing the historic river braiding and travels.

The northern flow of water in the Glacial North Saskatchewan River Valley was halted by ice, creating Glacial Rice Lake settling into the lowlands west of Grandora. Glacial Rice Lake drained by channels into the South Saskatchewan Valley “The Moon Lake Channel, a major spillway connecting the North Saskatchewan River basin with the South Saskatchewan, and a smaller parallel channel, Yorath Island Channel, also cross the Cory plain….but they are clearly not South Saskatchewan channels.”

Yorath Island Channel, Moon Lake Channel, Sutherland Channel and Cory Plain Channel Pleistocene Era South Sk River Valley 2588000 to 117000 years ago Adapted from Larry Edwin Hodges
Yorath Island Channel, Moon Lake Channel, Sutherland Channel and Cory Plain Channel Pleistocene Era South Sk River Valley 2588000 to 117000 years ago Adapted from Larry Edwin Hodges

Then there was another advance of ice ~ Patience Lake Ice ~ creating a kame and moraine ridge near Grandora 10 miles west of Saskatoon. The ice blocked the northern flow of water creating another glacial lake; Lake Saskatoon II. As the ice wasted away, & Lake returned to river valley, there were remnants of the lake in and south of Saskatoon. Lacustrine silts and clays were deposited south and west of the city area forming the Cory Plain surface. Paraphrase from Hodges

How is it best to preserve our nation’s geologic heritage which contain evidence some of the earth’s greatest examples of geologic phenomena. From glaciers to swales, it is a true inspiration to be immersed in your personal geologic experience here in the West Swale which envelopes the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area, Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and the Afforestation Area formerly known as George Genereux urban regional park. Yorath Island, an “end moraine” and a natural landmark in the South Saskatchewan River locates the confluence of the Yorath Island spillway with the glacial South Saskatchewan River Valley. The West Swale is a low-lying depression created by repeated glaciations and the melting of the last bit of glacial ice.

The West Swale, a major meltwater drainage channel, a glacial spillway and a prairie valley is a classical example of glacial spillway topography. In the West Swale are several areas and features that budding geologists can discover and study the results left behind as the “catastrophic floods of glacial meltwater and sediment washed through these valleys”, typifying the Yorath Island glacial spillway, now known as the West Swale.James S. Aber Pleistocene deposits and geology show “erosional features of the underlying bedrock surface such as buried valleys, which are filled and concealed by drift, and which result in a hickening of Pleistocene deposits; erosional features of the surface of the drift, such as stream valleys, which cause a thinning of the Pleistocene deposits; and depositional features such as end moraines, drumlins, and outwash plains of glacial origin, which result in a thickening of the Pleistocene deposits.P.F. Karrow

The preservation of the afforestation areas in 1972, therefore, has also preserved a segment of the invaluable historic geological landmark of the West Swale, and its Pleistocene heritage and history.  Next time you are out at the Richard St. Barb Baker Afforestation Area, or the Urban Regional Park formerly named George Genereux park, know you are spending an absolutely unforgettable day 2.6 million years in the making.

The 1884 Sectional Map and the 1915 Saskatoon Sheet both do a brilliant job showing the West Swale around the Blairmore Afforestation Areas.

Now it is time to zip on over to an adventure amid the Pleistocene Megafauna – with an online virtual tour to meet the mammoths, sabre-tooth cats, and tapirs.

BIBLIOGRAPHY:
Hodges, Larry Edwin: Morphology of the South Saskatchewan River Valley Outlook to Saskatoon PhD Thesis. Department of Geography. McGill University. Montreal, Quebec. July 1971.
Theberge, John B., (1989) The Wholeness of Nature. Legacy, The Natural History of Ontario. McClelland and Stewart Inc. ISBN 0-7710-8398-X

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
Off Leash Dog Park Valley Road Saskatoon!
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

“Clearly, human pressure is exerting a sudden and cataclysmic impact on much of this province, if viewed in the time-frame of evolution and geology to which the rhythms of ecosystems are tuned. The groundswell of environmental concern taking shape among us, its citizens, results in public pressure for new and stronger strictures on human exploitation and desecration…Such action is needed as the embodiment of an ethical responsibility to the land and living things, for our own well-being as well as for that of all other species.” Theberge, 1989. P.376

 

Further Acknowledgements

‘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

Acknowledgements

It is a true honour and privilege to recognize the valuable contributions, time and efforts put forward by a number of concerned citizens in Saskatoon. There is no denial, that we acknowledged in 2016 those who started the journey as Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and now it is time in 2017, to again recognize the stakeholders who have a vested interest in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. It is fantastic to continue to again recognize and appreciate the support of the stakeholders and interested parties who came forward in 2016, the interested groups and individuals have evolved and overlap into 2017,  the support of all interested parties is truly appreciated.  The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is truly richer for their consideration and assistance. Commendations to these amazing people and groups who respect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, groups and communities in 2016 and 2017 and those yet to come. In no particular order….

CarraganaFlower.JPG

The Montgomery Place Community Association are amazing stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Leslee Newman, President, and Trish Schmidt, Director, of the Montgomery Place Community Association, Ben Schmidt, Barb Riddle and all of its members have become stewards as well for the afforestation area, initializing the cleanup in 2015, and remaining on board to preserve the afforestation area, the ecology and wildlife habitat.

Jeff Hehn, Fatlanders FatTire Brigade (FFTB) Ambassador, and the members of this group are stewards acting in a protective service capacity educating the afforestation area community on security and safety and providing monitoring for a safe and secure area that the FFTB can bicycle in. The FFTB have also reached out to the community for “donations in kind” and engage in fund-raising for the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund”, as well as offering their time in a volunteer capacity for the furtherance of the “Man of Trees“ winter trail network at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Ron, has continued his volunteer service to maintain the tracks and trails over the long winter months, providing a grooming service after the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is covered in a deep blanket of snow.

Constable Xiang community liason officer alongside officers of the Saskatoon City Police, have provided protective services to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The area is patrolled in person and by the air to mitigate illegal trespass.

Further to the protective services of the Saskatoon City Police, the Corman Park Police Service and the Sask Valley Regional RCMP Warman Detachment cluster have come out to provide protective services to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The combined efforts of these law enforcement personnel who are alert to the potential of crime provide a safe and vibrant community in the afforestation area. Citizens with such wonderful support are thus willing and able to look out for one another’s interests in the afforestation area.

The Meewasin Valley Authority as Stewards of the Saskatchewan River Valley have provided direction, and support in an enormous capacity as Verity Moore-Wright at the MVA has kindly partnered with the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area as financial stewards ensuring that all private and public donations to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund MVA RSBBAA” serve to enhance and protect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area environment.

Additionally, Renny Grilz of the Meewasin Valley Authority provides wisdom, direction and guidance to the Stewards as an ecologist who has manages conservation areas for biodiversity across the prairie provinces and has a specialization in native plants.

The Honourable Hilary Gough, city councillor for Ward 2 in Saskatoon met with stakeholders who have a vested interest in this area of Saskatoon. Hilary Gough takes this ecological area very seriously, and was grateful for the opportunity to listen, reflect, and consider the information coming forward from a diverse group of individuals joined to support the afforestation area which was protected in perpetuity.

The City of Saskatoon very kindly supported the previous clean up efforts, covering the enormous tipping fees, and the charge of securing a Loraas bin on site. Additionally, following the Committee meeting of July 2016 and the ensuing City Council meeting of August 2016, the City of Saskatoon kindly placed out a number of Jersey Barriers on site to mitigate vehicular traffic. The City of Saskatoon currently includes the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the South West Off Leash Recreation Area in the ongoing South West Sector planning. The City of Saskatoon Urban Forestry Program undertook a tree inventory to determine the health of the forest, and future direction in regards to the woodlands. Further to this, the City of Saskatoon is currently undertaking a City wetlands inventory, as well as they are writing up a formal report for the South West Sector and the “master plan” of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Valerie Martz, President of the Saskatoon Nature Society is 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 urban foresters of the SOS Elms Coalition, “Save our Saskatoon” Elms are engaged, active and concerned supporters of this urban forest of Saskatoon, the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Their wisdom, and combined practical experience in regards to how to respect the afforestation area are truly appreciated.

Rick Huziak, representing the Northeast Swale Watchers and Candace Savage, spokesperson for the North East Swale Watchers and co-founder of “Wild about Saskatoon” support the efforts to enhance the West Swale wetlands environment and the woodlands of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The Northeast Swale Watchers are truly examples to follow and as his Worship, City of Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark said “generations from now, people will be grateful for the environmental reserve designation, intended to increase protection of the swale.” The past experience of the Northeast Swale Watchers has been a guiding beacon for the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area when it comes to protecting the West Swale and the afforestation area.

Chelsey Skeoch, Watershed Education Coordinator, South Saskatchewan River Watershed Stewards are very receptive to also working alongside the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area in preserving and conserving the biodiversity and health of the eco-system and wetlands.

Barbara Hanbidge who has been Ducks Unlimited Area Biologist, Education Specialist and Saskatoon Area Manager for Ducks Unlimited is an informed and supportive stakeholder for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Ducks Unlimited owns and manages the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area directly south and across the street from the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The 148 acres of land at the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area has flourished under Ducks Unlimited growing into an outdoor classroom providing educational programming on conservation of prairie wetland habitat. Chappell Marsh is a Class IV permanent wetland with its southern extension in the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area, and straddling Cedar Villa Road, Chappell Marsh continues on north through the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area affording a prime and well-developed wetlands habitat with emergent vegetation which supports unique and varied waterfowl. On consideration of the northern portion of Chappell Marsh, it should be an honour to support the conservation efforts undertaken by Ducks Unlimited in the southern portion of Chappell Marsh. The waterfowl are unaware of the human arbitrary title and water designations, the waterfowl are relying on a secure water habitat for foraging and breeding.

The Honourable Sheri Benson, Member of Parliament for Saskatoon West was very engaged with the direction that the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area were taking. Sheri Benson offered to check into the availability of any support for the concerns raised to protect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area at the Federal level.

Nicky Breckner, president of the Mount Royal Community Association was enthralled with the size of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. As a current off leash dog walker at the South West off leash recreation area, she was also very grateful that the City of Saskatoon was blessed with semi-wilderness habitat at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area and means to explore it further.

Megan Van Buskirk for the Saskatchewan Environmental Society realized that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, truly sounds like an important area to protect and was glad to network with the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Penny McKinlay & Andrew McKinlay of EcoFriendly Sask, dedicated to promoting and protecting our natural habitat, are proud to support the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and continue to keep up to date with the progress being undertaken at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Ross Harwood president of Cedar Villa Estates (Rural Municipality of Corman Park 344) is very supportive of the positive changes occurring in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area.  Mandy Bellrose as the neighbourhood watch representative for Cedar Villa Estates regularly walks the adjacent Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area to build a safe and vibrant community and environment at the afforestation area. With an ebb and flow of information, communities, afforestation area users and law enforcement officials can work together for solutions in making the afforestation area a safe place to walk, to relax or to engage in recreational or environmental activities. “A trusted neighbour is one of the most effective crime prevention tools ever created. SPS

The afforestation area is truly built on the strength of its stewards and spokespersons. David Kirton, the City of Saskatoon Off Leash Recreation Area liason for the South West off leash recreation area also recognized the bonding between the City, the afforestation area and SW OLRA community to reduce and mitigate illegal trespass. This is probably one of the most significant things that the average citizen as part of the larger community can do to lessen the risks, it is through such empowered citizens that community efforts resonate with success in building a safe and vibrant afforestation and wetlands community.

The community of off leash dog walkers, have been very supportive of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The individual casual off leash dog walkers are very appreciative of being offered the opportunity to walk their dogs off leash at the south west off leash recreation area, and do indeed come forward to volunteer, to clean up, to engage in conversation in support of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The walkers of the SW OLRA recognize the name sake of Dr. Richard St. Barbe Baker, L.L.D, O.B.E. and time and time again, they are impressed with the forestry and humanitarian work accomplished by St. Barbe, and feel honoured to be a part of the afforestation experience with a chance to view the diverse biodiversity of the area.

Murray Gross, YWCA, and as the local Saskatoon communications officer for the international festival Jane’s Walk came out to observe the civic minded discussion put forward by the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Jane Jacobs, author and urban activist, who believed that communities should be planned for the people by the people. “Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.” ~Jane Jacobs

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has been a powerful supporter of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Latter-day Saints missionaries serve in public affairs serving to build relationships with communities. The inspiration of the missionaries who came from across North America offering their time and talents made a dedicated commitment to come from across the land to meet in Saskatoon to offer compassionate service during the clean up effort. Thank you to the missionaries who provided to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area their multi-faceted humanitarian services.

Julia Adamson, resident of Meadowgreen, and SW off leash dog walker, SOS Elms Coalition, Saskatoon Nature Society, Nature Saskatchewan, Saskatoon Environmental Society and MVA partner as one of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area came forward in January of 2015 to speak before City Council to save the forest and protect the environment in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area and its attendant West Swale Wetlands.  Adamson also raised clean up funds for the Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund, and contributed time and energy to the 2016 clean up, and subsequent follow up endeavours.

Since this time the community efforts to protect and respect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area for our children and grandchildren have resonated with the heart of Saskatoon. Every instance when visitors and residents of the City of Saskatoon come to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, they are amazed by the ecological bio-diversity, and appreciate seeing the biodiversity of the West Swale wetlands – the north end of Chappell Marsh and its associated tributaries and marshes- the Riparian woodlands, and the modified and native grasslands of the area. The various and diverse groups and stakeholders appreciate the co-ordinated approach being afforded by the City of Saskatoon, the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and the Meewasin Valey Authority (MVA).

The Stewards previously acknowledged as well as these groups and individuals listed above have all united as a group – the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker – speaking up for positive change at the Richard St. Barbe Baker and embracing that the afforestation is preserved in perpetuity for the visitors and residents of the City of Saskatoon.

Saskatoon, truly shines with active groups and concerned citizens coming forward and taking action for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The response to the preservation and conservation efforts begun at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and West Swale have been very encouraging.

The next action plan is to network and connect with citizens of the City of Saskatoon about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the concerns of the many and several stewards, and the method going forward is to encourage all users and visitors to have a deep and abiding respect for the afforestation area.

There has been an amazing community response from several community associations as they also respect and support the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area; Montgomery Place Community Association, Parkridge, Fairhaven, Meadowgreen, Holiday Park, King George, Mount Royal, Dundonald Community Associations. The neighbouring rural areas in the Rural Municipality of Corman Park and residents of the hamlet of Cedar Villa Estates, also are very active and engaged stewards and stakeholders.

To everyone’s help, insight and knowledge, each word of wisdom, each hand offered to help is most graciously appreciated. It is with sincerest apologies if anyone has not been mentioned and their thoughts, insight and advice not noted at the website. Please drop us a line Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area if you have any further words of advice or concerns about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

So with the greatest of thanks to all of those, past, present and future, who have taken to heart the need to clean the afforestation area, to protect the rich bio-diversity of the eco-system, to sustain the environment at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation and who come together as a safe, rich and vibrant Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area community. Your further thoughts, words, and deeds are much appreciated. The afforestation area needs as many stewards to preserve and conserve this amazing site as is possible.

“If a man loses one-third of his skin he dies; if a tree loses one-third of its bark, it too dies. If the Earth is a ‘sentient being’, would it not be reasonable to expect that if it loses one-third of its trees and vegetable covering, it will also die? 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 the ‘skin’ of the earth, for without it there can be no water, and therefore, no life.

Of earth’s 30 billion acres, nine billion acres has already become desert. Ancient wisdom has taught that earth itself is a sentient being and feels the behaviour of man upon it I look at it in this way: If man loses 1/3 of his skin he dies; the plastic surgeons Say he has “had it”. It a tree loses 1/3. Of its bark, it dies. Ask a botanist or dendrologist, and he will confirm that, and I Submit that it the earth loses 1/3 of its natural tree cover it will die. When its green mantle of trees has been removed the spring water table sinks. Once the rhythm of the natural forest has been broken it is a difficult-and a lengthy operation-to restore it. Much as you may want to restore the indigenous tree cover immediately it may require a rotation of exotics as nurse trees. ~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 theland, 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!
Twitter: St Barbe Baker

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World Wetlands Day! February 2

“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. 1954

World Wetlands Day! February 2

Wetlands for Disaster Risk Reduction

World Wetlands Day Logo Wetlands For Disaster Risk Reduction
World Wetlands Day Logo Wetlands For Disaster Risk Reduction

February 2 heralds both the groundhog day and World Wetlands Day! World Wetlands Day was declared as February 2 by RAMSAR. “Canada is the only country in the world that has selected a wetland engineer as its national animal. We need to ensure that wetlands are better represented in the places we protect in the future. Wetlands are places of immense biological importance that also support our economy and well-being. “Kraus

The West Swale Wetlands in the City of Saskatoon are of extreme importance in mitigating drought in flood in the Municipal City of Saskatoon, neighbourhood of Montgomery Place, hamlet of Cedar Villa Estates and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park 344. “Wetlands act as a natural sponge, absorbing and storing excess rainfall and reducing flooding. During the dry season, they release the water stored, delaying the onset of droughts and reducing water shortages.” Muskoka Watershed Council

The West Swale Wetlands are vitally important, as they are a main lowlands channel between the North Saskatchewan River through Rice Lake, the Afforestation Area formely known as George Genereux Park , the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, Chappell Marsh Conservation Area having the confluence in the South Saskatchewan River at Maple Grove.

“Water is essential to life and socio-economic development.” Page v What is needed is an reliable water source with suitable water quality. “Riparian forest buffer systems (RFBS) are streamside ecosystems managed for the enhancement of water quality through control of nonpoint source pollution (NPS) and protection of the stream environment. The use of riparian management zones is relatively well established as a best management practice (BMP) for water quality improvement in forestry practices…Riparian ecosystems are connected to aquatic ecosystems through the hyporheic zone. (age 687 Lowrance

The Prairie Eco-zone locates bedrock aquifers laying beneath the basal aquitard of the Precambrian and Paleozoic rocks. “Aquifers (waterbearing zones) are defined as saturated geological units which have sufficient permeability to yield economic quantities of water to a water supply well. Aquitards are units which, though saturated, do not yield sufficient water to a water supply well.” Maathius Page 127. The aquifers are contained within Cretaceous shale. The Tyner Valley aquifer along with other buried valleys reside on top of the bedrock and are invaluable for groundwater supply.

The Judith River Formation formed in the Late Cretaceous is also called the Belly River formation. This formation has fine to medium grained sands, silts and clays deposited in a deltaic environment. The water supply of the Judith River is invaluable to agricultural, municipal and industrial users. “Potable water is only found in and above the Judith River formation since water in the older formations is too salty for human or animal consumption.” (Maathius page 127.) Surface precipitation flows from the surface of the land into the Judith River Formation, and from this aquifer the waters flow into the Tyner Valley aquifer. The Tyner Valley aquifer has its confluence with the Battleford Valley aquifer, which thence flows into the North Saskatchewan River. The Tyner Valley aquifer is a major pre-glacial chert and quarzite gravel aquifer overlain with sands from the Empress group. The Tyner Valley Aquifer is a major aquifer system. These bedrock aquifers are capable of producing more than 200 gallons per minute gpm) from an individual well.

In Saskatchewan years of drought and high water tables are cyclical. During years of drought, groundwater is looked upon to help sustain the water supply. “Movement within and recharge of the Judith River Aquifer is limited by the highly impermeable shale that lies above this aquifer. “~Prairie Provinces Water Board. Attention to the recharge of the aquifers enhances the best management policies. “The low hydraulic conductivity of thick till and bedrock aquitards limits the rechard to deeper aquifers.” Maathuis page v. Deep aquifers show increasing rechard through the months of October and March. A shallow or surficial aquifer will show an increase in water coinciding with spring meltwaters and summer rains.

“In Saskatchewan approximately 45% of the population relies on groundwater as a source of drinking water .” (page v) Additionally groundwater is also useful for agricultural irrigation, and industrial purposes.

The Meewasin Valley Authority explains that in regards to low lying areas such as a swale, they offer “high quality biodiversity, proximity to urban areas, economic benefits for recreation and education and a natural filter for our air and water. The swale contains wetlands that provide a means of flood control for the surrounding community.”

“Evidence shows that wetlands mitigate some natural disasters and lower the risks for people: first, by reducing the immediate physical impacts and second, by helping people survive and recover in the aftermath. “The Conversation The Meewasin Valley Authority manages the wetlands and afforested areas east of the wetlands located in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, along with the owners of the land, the City of Saskatoon. They have worked together in partnership honouring the 1972 city council acclamation to “preserve in perpetuity” the 660 acres of afforestation areas.

Alongside the dedication of the afforestation areas as parks in 1979, the City of Saskatoon implemented a Growth Management Strategy with objectives, goals and priorities …resulting in specific community plans, programs, policies and actions which will control and channel all development to satisfy special local community requirements. The absence of such plans …is usually followed by uncontrolled, unplanned, meaningless urban sprawl, unsightliness, rapid rises in real estate values, rampant speculation, and all the associated socio-economic ills which cause social unrest and dissatisfaction, physical decay and detioration of the urban fabric.File No. C. 17-10-1 This program has moved forward as Shaping Saskatoon and Saskatoon Speaks.

World Wetlands Day serves to raise public awareness and impress upon everyone the need and imperative for a healthy wetlands. “most of us are largely unaware of how wetlands safeguard us. In fact, we often see wetlands as wasteland; something to be filled in or converted to other uses. Scientists estimate that at least 64 per cent of the world’s wetlands have disappeared since 1900.”Muskoka Watershed Council Things you can do for your wetlands!.

Following in the footsteps of the 2015 community clean up, three times in 2016 community volunteers rallied together to clean the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, situated in the low lying area of the West Swale. Not only did the riparian forests and ecosystem benefit from the clean up efforts, but so did the wetlands of the West Swale. “With 71 per cent of our planet covered in water, it makes sense to focus on the health of our waterways” on World Wetlands Day.Fong

Karla Guyn, CEO for Ducks Unlimited Canada, “Canada is home to 25 per cent of the world’s wetlands. This is both a privilege and responsibility. World Wetlands Day reminds all Canadians of the critical role they play in our lives and the need to conserve them.” Water Canada

What can you do personally?

  • Visit a wetlands
  • Find out more about our wetlands in Saskatoon – the West Swale Wetlands, the Northeast Swale, Richardson Ravine, Beaver Creek
  • Enter the photo competition
  • Take a walk with the birds in the West Swale Wetlands with a guide book in hand.
  • Initiate a volunteer clean up of the Afforestation Area formerly known as the George Genereux Park (in the west swale wetlands)
  • Contact your city or RM councillor, the RM of Corman Park 344, an environmental or green group, the city of Saskatoon and the MVA about the importance of wetlands.

“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. 1954

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Clean ups

Cleanup – spring of 2015

July 2016 Trash clean-up Summary

A Tree-mendous Result October clean up 2016

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Akatay, Jane. World Wetlands Day: a fragile habitat for Fethiye’s feathered friends. Fethitye times. February 2, 2017

Celebrating World Wetlands Day in Canada Water Canada.

Christiansen, E.A., W.A. Menseley and S.H. Whitaker. Groundwater in Southern Saskatchewan. Atlas of Saskatchewan. Editor K.I. Fung. Page 68. Modern Press. 1969.

Christiansen, E.A. and B.J. Schmid. Galcial geology of Southern Saskatchewan – University of Saskatchewan.

City of Saskatoon. Section C General Administration and Finance. Growth Management Strategy. File No. C. 17-10-1. January 2, 1979.

Dunn, Christian. World Wetlands Day Highlights Importance of Vital Habitats. February 2, 2017.

Exaggerating the value of wetlands for natural diasaster mitigation is a risky business. The Conversation.

Goal 2: Protect Interprovincial Groundwater Aquifers Prairie Provinces Water Board (PPWB)
Current Knowledge Saskatchewan Research Council. SRC Publication No. 11304-2E00. April 2000.

Fong, Jean. Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup Asks Canadians to Do Their Part on Earth Day and Beyond Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup
April 22/2015
Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup

Guide for World Wetlands Day 2 February. Wetlands for Disaster Risk Prevention. From 2 February 2017 to 2 March 2017. young people between the ages of 18 – 25 years are invited to participate in a photo contest for a chance to win a free flight to visit a Wetland of International Importance!

It’s World Wetlands Day: Muskoka Watershed Council on the importance of wetlands for disaster risk reduction Muskoka Watershed Council. Doppler online.

 

Kraus, Dan. Opinion: Why Canada matters on World Wetlands Day. February 2, 2017

Kraus, Dan. Why Canada Matters on World Wetlands Day. Huffington Post. February 1, 2017

Layout 1 Meewasin Northeast Swale Brochure for Web. Meewasin Valley Authority.

The Northeast Swale Saskatoon’s Ancient River Channel

Lowrance, Richard et al. Water quality functions of Riparian Forest Buffers in Chesapeake Bay Watersheds. Springer-Verlag New York Inc. Environmental Management Vol 21. No. 5 pp 687-712.

Maathuis, Harm. Groundwater in Southern Saskatchewan. Atlas of Saskatchewan. Celebrating the Millennium Edition. Page 127-128. Editor Ka-iu Fung. 1999. University of Saskatchewan. ISBN 0-88880-387-7.

Maathuls, H. The quality of Natural Groundwaters in Saskatchewan. Prepared for Saskatchewan Watershed Authority.

Meewasin Northeast Swale Meewasin Valley Authority

Padbury, G.A., Donald F. Acton, Colette T. Stushnoff. Ecoregions of Saskatchewan Canadian Plains Research Centre. Compiled by Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan Environment and Resource Management
University of Regina Press, 1998
ISBN 0889770972, 9780889770973

People see wetlands as wasteland (February 2 is World Wetlands Day.) CanIndia News.

Photo Contest – World Wetlands Day – Wetlands help us cope with extreme weather events.

Violata, Annalyn. Wetlands helping reduce the risk of disasters. SBS Your Language.

Wetlands: Why we need to take care of them, what can we do? Zee Media Bureau. February 2, 2017

World Wetlands Day. TimeandDate.com

World Wetlands Day. – official site

World Wetlands Day on Facebook

World Wetlands Day on twitter

World Wetlands Day on Instagram:

World Wetlands Day RAMSAR

World Wetlands Day IWMI. International Water Management Institute.

World Wetlands Day. Wildlife Preservation Canada.

World Wetlands Day 2017: Wetlands for Disaster Risk Reduction. Around the World.

World Wetlands Day. Nature Conservancy Canada

World Wetlands Day. Wetlands for Disaster Risk Reduction UNESCO.

World Wetlands Day Wikipedia.

World Wetlands Day. Republic of South Africa. Department of Environmental Affairs 2017 .
Wetlands: Why we need to take care of them, what can we do? Zee Media Bureau. February 3, 2017

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

“Man has lost his way in the jungle of chemistry and engineering and will have to retrace his steps, however painful this may be. He will have to discover where he went wrong and make his peace with nature. In so doing, perhaps he may be able to recapture the rhythm of life and the love of the simple things of life, which will be an ever-unfolding joy to him.” ~ Richard St. Barbe Baker

Shoreline Cleanup Participant

I think that could the weary world know…

Are you on facebook? Here is a Badge for you!

Show that you are coming out to the Great Canadian Shoreline Clean Up taking place at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area on StBarbeBaker
Saturday July 9, 2016 with this facebook badge!  The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area has within in it three prairie pothole wetlands of the West Swale.  The West Swale offers a diverse wetlands environment home to the uncommon Mountain Bluebird, and a site specific locale for the Ruddy Duck.  The wetlands provide a diverse wildlife habitat with benefits for recreational and educational opportunities both within the City of Saskatoon city limits, and in close proximity to the urban areas. This unique area provides an excellent drainage opportunity, and affords a measure of flood control for the land in the area.  Additionally, the West Swale wetlands act as a natural filter for water entering the South Saskatchewan River. Plastic, however, lasts several years up to 450 before it breaks down. Litter impacts water quality of the West Swale wetlands through contamination and poses threats to wildlife.

This year’s clean up is taking place Saturday July 9, 2016 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Meeting at the South West off Leash Dog Park at 8:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Map online

The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is on facebook
Facebook: StBarbeBaker
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

badge2015-participants.jpg
Join the clean up and share your badge!

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Wikimapia West Swale (Southern wetlands) just over 5 km in length which drains into the South Saskatchewan River 2.5 kilometers from Chappell Marsh Conservation area. This wetlands intersects with both Chappell marsh Conservation Area and the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Chappell Marsh Conservation Area is south of Cedar Villa Road, and Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is north.

Wikmapia West Swale (Northern Wetlands 1.75 km long

St Barbe often quoted Stanton A. Coblenz
I think that could the weary world know
Communion with these spirits breathing peace
Strangely a veil would lift, a light would glow,
And the dark tunnel of our lives would glow,
And the dark tunnel of our lives would cease.

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
Contact the MVA 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)” .
Twitter: StBarbeBaker
July 9, 2016 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area CLEAN UP Day PAMPHLET

Reflections on the Forest

It is with a spirit of reverence that I approach God’s Creation, this beautiful Earth

At the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, there were tours held during the Wild About Saskatoon Nature City Festival in May of 2016. It was a blessing to indeed meet those who came out, and managed to find the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.

Their comments proclaimed that they learned so much about the history of the afforestation area, about Richard St. Barbe Baker, and about the trees planted in the forest. And, in turn, it can truly be said that the tour guides, in turn learned from the participants, so it was very fantastic, indeed.

The Meewasin Valley Authority has a similar counterpart in Prince Edward Island, called the Island Nature Trust. The Island Nature Trust protects the wildlife habitat and manages natural areas of Prince Edward Island. Their vision is to connect natural areas on the island by corridors sustaining and managing land for sustained use, planning for future generations.

During clean up blitzes on Prince Edward Island, a group of women come out and sing for the volunteers. They sing in the style of Caroline McDade. The album, This Ancient Love; Visions of a Sacred Land sung by McDade is online at YouTube. A quote from McDade’s song “Peril and Promise” echo words of Richard St. Barbe Baker, himself.

“This is a time when humanity must choose its future,
A future that holds both peril and promise. . . .
To focus not on having, but being.
Having or being? The choice is ours.”
Rising Green flows like a Celtic melody, the last verse;
“My foot carries days of the old into new,
our dreaming shows us the way.
Wondrous our faith settles deep in the earth,
rising green to bring a new day.
Rising green, rising green, rising green to bring a new day.”

Upon hearing quotes by Richard St Barbe Baker, these singers thought they would incorporate some of St. Barbe’s thoughts and words into their songs at the next Prince Edward Island Clean Up, and so St. Barbe lives on, and now in song!

As we wandered around in the forest, each drinking in the various scenes and hearbeat of the forest, various wishes came forward from those walking in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.
Wouldn’t it be great to have a bench right here, and sit to listen to the blackbirds, and watch the ducks upon the West Swale wetlands.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a rest room area to be able to spend a longer time within the afforestation area and not be called away.
Wouldn’t it be exciting to explore other tree varieties, perhaps Aesculus glabra commonly known as Ohio buckeye -a type of horse chestnut common to the midwestern United States, but introduced to Saskatchewan. This would, indeed insert a bit of orange colour into the autumn landscape.
Wouldn’t it be fantastic to increase the number of Green Ash. The Chappell Marsh Conservation Area has successfully drawn the “uncommon” Mountain Bluebird, Sialia currucoides, to bird boxes by the marsh south of Cedar Villa Road. Richard St. Barbe Baker afforestation area has Green Ash, the natural home of the Mountain Bluebird. An amazing conjunction of the two portions of the west swale connecting the wildlife habitat corridor in such a fashion.

Closing the tour at the end of the day with the two planting ceremonial rites or songs of Richard St. Barbe Baker, and this was very well received. St. Barbe said “Why not a dance for tree planting? A Dance of the Trees!” A request was made that they should be online, so here they are.

Be like a tree in pursuit of your cause:
Stand firm. Grip hard. Feet shoulder width apart, string attached to crown of head at the top, pull to straighten spine. Shoulders comfortably back, Chin tucked in. Feel this firm stand. Now grip hard with toes. Feel roots growing down into the earth
Thrust upward to the skies. Hands go up over head (may tip-toe if desired)
Bend to the winds of heaven. Wave back and forth in the air bending sideways at the waist, to the left, to the right, arms still overhead, swaying with wind.
And learn tranquility. Lower hands to “prayer pose” in front of chest holding the earth in arms, and rest.

“Children of the Green Earth” song

From our Hearts Start: standing “firm” as above. Place hands folded up across heart.
With our Hands, Open arms wide outstretched in front of body –face palms up showing hands.
To the Earth Bend over at the waist, and reach down to touch the earth.
All the world together Rise up slowly, bringing arms up and around as if encompassing the whole world globe, the entire earth.

And so it is fitting that a reflection is taken, a moment to step back, see what went well at the Wild About Saskatoon ~ Nature City Festival and what can be learned to move forward.

“It is with a spirit of reverence that I approach God’s Creation, this beautiful Earth. The ancients believe that the Earth was a sentient being and felt the behavior of mankind upon it. As we have no proof to the contrary, it might be as well for responsible people to accept this point of view and behave accordingly.” – 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
Contact the MVA 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)” .
Twitter: StBarbeBaker
July 9, 2016 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area CLEAN UP Day PAMPHLET