by Carl Doucette, President, Ferguson Forest Centre
Residents of North Grenville are used to seeing fields of seedlings in the Ferguson Tree Nursery as they travel down County Road 43, or greenhouses full of container stock off County Road 44. However, have you ever stopped to think of what becomes of these tiny seedlings. Well, here is an example of what your nursery is doing to help in reforestation and afforestation in the Province of Ontario.
Theresa Allingham, a Kemptville resident and 2nd year student at Memorial University of Newfoundland, left a few weeks ago to plant trees in Northern Ontario. An avid environmentalist, she was thrilled to see a truck full of seedlings on her first day from her very own hometown. The first tree she planted was a spruce from the Ferguson Tree Nursery.
The benefit of tree planting is well documented. As trees grow, they help stop climate change by removing carbon dioxide from the air, storing carbon in the trees and soil, and releasing oxygen into the atmosphere. Trees and shrubs (also grown in our nursery) improve soil and water conservation, moderate local climate by providing shade, regulate temperature extremes, increase wildlife habitat, and improve the land’s capacity to adapt to climate change. These are all benefits forests and shrubs offer the environment and in turn, us. According to scientific analysis, planting 20 million trees will absorb 1.6 million tons of carbon – the equivalent of taking 1.24 million cars off the road for a year. So, when you see those seedlings growing in our nursery fields, you now know the contribution they are making to a healthy environment.
The Ferguson Tree Nursery is operated by the not-for-profit Ferguson Forest Centre Corporation and has been expertly steered during these challenging Covid-19 times by its three directors: Maureen Jacques, Penny Lennox and Carolyn Rayfield, aided by a competent and hard-working staff.
The Corporation’s mission is to operate the tree nursery and utilize its profits to:
- promote awareness of, and interest in, forestry in particular, afforestation and sustainable forest management.
- maintain, enhance and promote the responsible use and stewardship of the recreation and conservation lands managed by the Ferguson Forest Centre Corporation for the benefit of the residents of North Grenville including trails, arboretum and dog park.
The Ferguson Tree Nursery continues to produce a variety of high quality, cost effective nursery stock for the enhancement of both the urban and rural forest environment. Check us out at www.fergusontreenursery.ca or www.fergusonforestcentre.ca