Hi there, hope some of this info helps you make a green shift this summer. Enjoy the outdoors!
Bugs - mostly beneficial...
Can anyone remember having to regularly wash splattered bugs off a car's windshield? That doesn’t happen anymore because of the drastic reduction of insects in the last 30 years - largely due to urbanization, climate change & agricultural intensification where bare fields are treated with pesticides which persist in the soil & environment. Insects are at the heart of every food web, they pollinate a large majority of plant species, keep the soil healthy, recycle nutrients, are food for birds & control pests. We can do our part to encourage these by creating habitat on ourfarms, in ourmunicipalities &home gardens. If your back garden is a bit weedy this will actually encourage all kinds of wee creatures & provide many usefulbenefits.The bookGarden Bugs of Ontariohelps you attract, repel & control bugs naturally & biologically without pesticides.
Unfortunately, Roundup is readily available, even though over 10,000 farmers are suing Bayer/Monsanto due to cancer caused by this toxic chemical. It makes sense to desist from using all pesticides that endanger us, our children & our ecosystems.
Bees love trees
Did you know that there are approximately 350 species of native bees living in the GTA? Unlike the non-native honey bee, most of them are solitary, nest in the ground and do not sting. They provide essential pollination services for both our agriculture systems and natural areas. But native bees are facing the same serious threats as other insects. So, how can we help? Planting native trees and shrubs with densely clustered flowers provides native bees with much-needed food sources. Some attractive, bee-friendly native species include the early blooming red maple and serviceberry trees, the mid-season blooming Kentucky coffee tree and nannyberry shrub and the late blooming basswood tree and common ninebark shrub. Local non-profit group LEAF (Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests), offers many attractive, bee-friendly native species at subsidized prices. You can also get free factsheets on their website. Follow them on social media for helpful tips. Learn more at www.yourleaf.org
Correct tree pruning
A properly pruned tree should not have lengthy stubbles and be close enough to the trunk so the tree is able to heal over. That will not be possible for the badly pruned tree pictured at left. It will only create an entry point for insect and disease infestations.View link to correct pruning.
Our plastic pollution crisis
Richmond Hill is looking for practical strategies to reduce single use plastics. YREA submitted a list of suggestions in our address to Council but we, as individuals also need to do our part in the midst of this plastic pollution crisis. Try making a green shift with these measures:
Buy a few reusable shopping bags and use them instead of plastic. They are washable and will last for years.
Until fruit & veggie produce bags are compostable, put back into your shopping bag and reuse many times.
BYOC - Bring your own containers. Use for bulk purchases, takeout food, at the fish & deli counter or for leftovers to take home from restaurants.
Don’t buy bottled water. Fill your reusable one at the kitchen sink.
Use your own mug at a coffee shop.
Refuse straws, extra packaging whenever possible.
If you do have black plastic containers from takeouts, reuse over and over for food storage in fridge & freezer.
When you cover bowls with cling wrap, if it doesn't touch the food, reuse or better yet reuse Etee wraps for up to 150 times.
Thank you to all our donors
YREA was thrilled to be presented with a gift of $2500 from Vaughan during their Earth Hour event. We are so very grateful for this support.
During YREA's May donor appreciation hike & social we were enjoyably side tracked with bird & plant identification as well as litter &
garlic mustard pulling - necessary, but not as enjoyable. Thank you to all who
support us. We truly appreciate your kindness.