'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act'
YREA Autumn 2018 News & Views
The fabulous forest & fungi story
Mushrooms are an important ecosystem component. Depending on species, they function as decomposers, parasites or in symbiotic, beneficial relationships with trees and other plants. Decomposers are easy to spot doing their thing.
Parasitic fungi, such as Armillaria (Honey mushrooms) attack living, decaying and dead plant material. They are some of the largest known organisms, covering an 18 hectare area in a Michigan forest, 600 hectares in Washington State and 880 hectares in an Oregon forest. On the plus side, they ARE good to eat.
Beneficial, mycorrhizal fungi help tree roots absorb nutrients more efficiently and fight off harmful, soil-dwelling predators. In exchange, the fungus receives sugars and nutrients from its host plant. This is all done through a mycelium filament network that binds together with tree and plant roots. If you see a line of Amanita muscaria (Fly agaric) above ground, imagine its path and underground network along a tree root. These fungi, though helpful to trees, are toxic to humans.
When you take a walk in the woods this autumn, along with the fall colours, look out for fungi and guess their ecological role. Learn more
Pollinator habitat & roadside naturalization - without fuss
YREA has been advocating for naturalized roadsides for years. With the demise of pollinator habitat due to urbanization, it behooves us to naturalize for nature. With so many municipalities signing on to the Mayor's Monarch Pledge and becoming official Bee Cities it makes sense to support these initiatives by keeping roadsides and boulevards unmowed, thereby creating instant habitat. Less work, less cost by just leaving it Bee. The following images are a roadside kept unmowed and the other mowed. Which do you think pollinators prefer? Which do you prefer? Remind your local representatives that this is important. See Toronto Pollinator Strategy for what is already being done. Unless you are pasturing sheep or cows, thistles are a great food source for many species of birds. So replace the word 'weed' with 'forb' which is any herbaceous plant that is not a grass. Goldenrod does NOT cause allergies. Yes Ragweed does in some people, but so do toxic, petrochemical lacedfabric softeners & dryer sheets, yet people still use them. We need nature, let's lighten up our control over it.
Downward dog yoga for dog owners who haven't tried it
People are getting fed up of being accosted by off leash dogs and finding dog poo along our trails. There is a $400+ fine if you don't pick up after your dogs. Please don't give all dog owners a bad name by this unlawful behaviour. Be respectful of others and the environment.
Fats, oils & grease go into the green bin, not down the drain
Sounds odd to put grease in green bin, but it will help to keep your drains from
clogging. In municipalities that don't have a green bin program, FOG can be cooled and put in the trash. For more info visit
Dear YREA donors & volunteers
We will be scheduling our traditional donor appreciation event in spring during Trillium time. Our hike & social will be held on an afternoon during the third weekend of May.
YREA needs funding support to continue our community awareness & advocacy; further biochar research & develop our biochar social enterprise - YREA's way of addressing climate change.