Category Archives: Environment

Caterpillar Voracious Appetites

Now is the time to protect trees from caterpillars with voracious appetites.

Heritage bur oaks in our neighbourhood are being attacked by the gypsy moth caterpillar. In fact, all deciduous trees are at risk from the caterpillar. So are conifers.

Here’s what you can do to protect any tree in your yard (or in the park):
https://www.champlainoaks.net/post/copy-of-protect-your-bur-oaks-from-gypsy-moth-caterpillars

[Oak tree with burlap sack circumference guard]

Plants Need Help

Tom Sawyer’s Life Lesson

Mark Twain’s brilliant story about the Adventures of Tom Sawyer shows that “to make someone covet a thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to attain.” Tom Sawyer, when his friend asked why he was not distressed about having to paint his Aunt Polly’s fence, simply said, “I don’t see why I would be, you don’t get to do this everyday.” Within a few hours, every one of his friends was vying for the opportunity to paint the fence, even paying him in kind (apples and precious pieces of string) for the privilege.

Well, we have some difficult things to challenge you that are also important enough for you to want to take on the challenge.

What are we talking about? Keeping 180 trees and a pollinator garden alive and thriving during a dry spring and summer is both difficult to attain and important to beautifying our neighbourhood. We are also trying to recover the abandoned former parking lot at Pontiac and the Park as a future tree planting site. Your contribution can make a difference, by taking on responsibility for a few hours in our watering schedule or by doing other tree or earth moving care. We have a pretty good system in place, but need more helping hands.

[Saplings with Stakes on Pontiac where there were parking spaces]

If this amazing opportunity to bring biodiversity into the neighbourhood is something you want to be part of, contact Daniel Buckles (dbuckles@sas2.net) for a brief orientation and access to the online schedule. The project is an initiative of the Champlain Park Community Association.

Forest Artists with Don Monet

Are you a struggling student artist? Work with a pro and help your neighbourhood too by documenting the amazing green transformation going on right here in Champlain Park.

If you have been down to the river you will have seen the pollinator garden at the end of Carleton, and the “Tiny Forest” that has popped up along Pontiac.

[Black Walnut Way - tree planting along Pontiac Street]

There are other delights in the woods too that are the fruit of local volunteers with the Champlain Park Community Association.

We would like your help (photographers, painters, sculptors, etc.) to showcase the plant biodiversity and volunteer spirit we are bringing into the neighbourhood.

Don Monet, painter and owner of Ottawa’s CUBE Gallery, lives here too and would be happy to mentor or otherwise support you in a local art project focused on the green transformation. If interested, contact Daniel Buckles (daniel.buckles@gmail.com) for a virtual introduction to Don.

Calling all High School Students! – Reminder

Looking for a fun place to volunteer?

[Pollinator garden with pots of new plants waiting]

The Champlain Park Community needs your help caring for plants and tiny forests (watering, weeding and maintenance).

“It is really nice to spend some time outside in the forest, and you get volunteer hours too! If you love to be outdoors and help out your community, this is the place for you!”

says student volunteer Natasha L.

You can expand your knowledge about plants and trees and species of bugs, and meet new people, all while getting volunteer hours. It is all outdoors, so there is plenty of space to social distance and stay safe!

If you are interested, please contact Daniel Buckles (daniel.buckles@gmail.com)

Busy as Bees

Yesterday was World Bee Day, raising awareness about the contributions of bees to pollination of plants (including food crops). The Champlain Park Community Association volunteers have been busy planting the pollinator garden at the end of Carleton Avenue, and planting a mini-forest in the empty space east along Pontiac Avenue to Northwestern. Some 170 trees have gone in there. Beginning Saturday, we will be breaking up the gravel shoulder to the former Pontiac roadway, along the north edge of the woods, in preparation for fall planting of shrubs, trees and butterfly plants currently in backyard tree nurseries. Each of our 7 planters are being cared for by volunteer gardeners.

All activities are designed to beautify the connection between our community and the “Kitchi Sibi” (“Great River” in Algonquin), and are permitted by the NCC and the City.

Are you able to help? We need help watering plants, weeding in some locations, building chicken wire cages to protect saplings, etc. so please contact CPCATrees@gmail.com for details. Donations to the Association are also welcome as they help buy what volunteers can’t make (e-transfer to FinancesCPCA@gmail.com). Everyone can pitch in by bringing water to fill the rain barrels set up on a direct “bee line” to the beach.

[Pollinator Garden Area before and after Garden Created]

Pollinator Garden Area before (top) and after (bottom) Garden Created.

Calling all High School Students!

Do you need to log “volunteer hours” in order to graduate?

Would you like those hours to be spent outdoors, enjoying the sunshine and fresh air?

If so, then the Champlain Park Community Association is the partner for you. We need volunteers to help with greening of our neighbourhood (care for plants, digging gardens, maintenance in the Champlain Woods, etc.).

If interested, contact Daniel Buckles (daniel.buckles@gmail.com).

Watering the Pollinator Garden

Going for a walk to the River? Take some extra water with you to give to plants in the Pollinator Garden. Water plants that look dry, or add your water to the blue jug on site. Water is life. Diversity is life. Thanks!

[Pollinator Garden Sign]

Tick Tick… Spring Ticks!

Since the weather is warming up, the insects are starting to come out. That includes the ticks living in our area. Have a look at the NCC’s Tick information post to find out how to deal with these half spiders at https://ncc-ccn.gc.ca/blog/tick-safety-in-the-capital

[Screen shot of NCC Tick Info Page]

Homes Wanted for Tree Saplings

Are you willing to provide a foster home for a tree sapling?

[Small Oak Sapling - just a leaf]

The Champlain Park Enviro Committee is looking for caretakers of small, potted trees that will eventually make their way into public spaces in the community. The term for taking care of plants can range from a few months to two years, depending on species and how quickly we can find a permanent home. Learn about and share your knowledge of native trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants, while also helping to create a legacy urban forest and healthy environment.

If you would be interested in becoming a member of our Caretaker Network, volunteering as Champlain Park Plant Caretaker, please complete the Caretaker registration form  and one of the Project Coordinators will get back you.

Thanking you in advance for your interest.

For more details on the Champlain Park Plant Caretaker please visit the Projects homepage

Big Trees and Mechanicsville Promoting Trees vs Embassies

Via Heather and Daniel:

Mechanicsville Community Association and Big Trees of Kitchissippi invite you to make your voice count in efforts to say YES to more trees and No to embassies at the NCC Burnside property on the Ottawa River in Kitchissippi Ward.

[Poster for More Trees Here]

First, send a video message (hug) to Councillors and Federal Ministers before Earth Day next week, using this simple video platform: https://app.vidhug.com/yes-to-trees-no-to-embassies-/HyZ-FoNL_/record

Use your phone, or record directly on the platform, indoors or (preferably) outdoors to say Yes (and No).

Second, sign this petition calling on the City of Ottawa and NCC to honour their commitments to addressing the climate emergency, by saying Yes to more trees on the site, and No to embassies:  See Petition