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Neighbourwoods North has been working with the Grey County Manager of Climate Change Initiatives, Linda Swanston, seeking approval from Grey Council and Staff to replace the environmentally unfriendly expanse of lawn in front of the administration

building in Owen Sound. Large monoturf have several problems as our climate changes: they do not provide the diverse plant life needed to create strong and healthy ecosystems. Fertilizers and herbicides used on lawns contaminate soil and other plants as well as adding toxins to

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The expanse of  lawn in front of Grey County Administration Building

local water systems.  Additionally, the energy that goes into producing fertilizer and fresh water, as well as mowing, means turf lawns produce more greenhouse gasses overall than they can take in.

     Happily, the Council is receptive to regenerating their landscape with more ecologically friendly alternatives. Equally as important  the building maintainence team are also all in favour of naturalizing this property. At publication, NeighbourWoods North and the County are looking at an initial planting of 10 sugar maple saplings, shrubs, and small trees on October 15. These beautiful native trees will eventually provide shade along the sidewalk leading up the building. Grey County is reaching out to like-minded groups within the area for assistance at this planting event.  NeighbourWoods North will be turning the project over to the county for ongoing maintenance once the first planting is done.


In August, members of NeighbourWoods North Steering Committee will be speaking to the Silver C's about the Healing Path.   If you or your group would like to hear about the work at the Hospital, cooperation with other groups, past or future projects, please contact us.

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Location of berm to be planted

The City of Owen Sound has requested the assistance of NeighbourWoods North in planting the berms to the west of the Water Treatment Plant which will take place in 2023 provided the City has

the funding lined up.   Planting on berms created during the process of construction is difficult as often there is very little viable topsoil available on this type of berm.  Soil samples need to betaken this year in order to facilitate planning for the right type of plants. 

Berms are also subject to erosion, especially with the types of storms we have had in recent years. Slope stabilization can be achieved through hard techniques and soil bioengineering techniques or a combination of both.  To determine what would work best on the berms by the water treatment plant will take investigation, research, and planning.

Although the task seems daunting, NeighbourWoods North is up for the challenge.

Planting Berms at Water Treatment Plant

As part of the Tree Cities of the World initiative, the City of Owen Sound will be celebrating its trees and the city staff and local residents who

individual or group.   Should the celebration take place in the fall or the spring?   Should it be a one day event or more?  Where should it take place?  How do we honour the city staff who work with the trees?  How do we honour residents and groups who help plant or maintain, support financially through memorial trees, or provide support in other ways?    Other cities have held such things as  family days with tree themed activities, tree and landscape workshops,  seedling plantings in schools, notable trees promoted, general tree plantings, dedicating memorial forests, and more.  If you or your group have ideas for a tree celebration in Owen Sound or would like to help it what is to become an annual event, please contact us.

Wedding Toast
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