Categories: Environment

Tree party for 150th

St. Albert’s oldest forest is celebrating Canada’s sesquicentennial this week by adding about 3,000 trees to its number.

Residents and dignitaries will be at the Grey Nuns White Spruce Park on June 1 to add more trees to the white spruce forest.

The event is backed by a grant from Tree Canada and is one of 150 similar plantings being held this year to celebrate Canada’s 150th, said city community recreation co-ordinator Erin Pickard.

Professional planters will add about 2,700 white spruce seedlings to the west side of the forest prior to the event as part of the ongoing effort to expand the forest, said Daryl D’Amico, co chair of the Grey Nuns White Spruce Park Working Group. St. Albert Scouts and Junior Forest Wardens will plant the rest on June 1.

Guests will also help plant a showcase garden on the site of the city’s old tree nursery in the forest to commemorate Canada’s 150th, Pickard said. There will be an Autumn Blaze maple for Canada, a lodgepole pine for Alberta, a white spruce for St. Albert and a beaked willow for the First Nations, as well as a plaque.

The white spruce forest is the oldest tree stand in the city, with retired forestry professor Peter Murphy pegging it at about 180 years old.

Pickard said she hoped to see about 50 residents come out to the event this Thursday at 6 p.m. Shovels will be provided. Call 780-418-6005 for details.

Kevin Ma: Kevin Ma joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2006. He writes about Sturgeon County, education, the environment, agriculture, science and aboriginal affairs. He also contributes features, photographs and video.