High temperatures of 35C+ without rain for most of July in southern Saskatchewan has taken its toll on our yard and garden. Plenty of water and fertilizer has kept our front lawn green, but our once beautiful ferns and delicate flowers are drying up and withering away. Thankfully, certain species of flowers like the Tiger Lilly and the Sunflower thrive in the heat.
Without a doubt there is no shortage of images, video, and stories on social media espousing the extraordinary and the mundane. For me, life is about the simple things that combine and/or synchronize together into the complexity of life.
As a conservationist, I have always been fascinated by our natural environment and silviculture in particular. Our forest resources, whether natural or in a horticultural sense (i.e. the willow tree in my back yard), are renewable. If we treat our environment with respect and care, each new generation of our respective families, not to mention greater society, will benefit greatly.
The large willow tree in my backyard was cut down because the trunk had split, probably due to old age, and the willow tree was threatening to come down on the roof of our house, or perhaps the fence between us and our neighbours. It is conceivable that the majestic tree could have lived for another decade, but the risk of the perpetually strong prairie wind blowing it over was no longer acceptable.
According to one of the team members of the company that we hired, the wood chips will be recycled as ground cover for new trees and shrubs in private and perhaps public areas in the city. The useable firewood will likely be donated to someone in need.
I was considerably disappointed with the numerous people that discarded their garbage all over Wascana Park during the Canada Day celebrations. Even two days later there was garbage seen floating on the lake and strewn all over the lawn and forested areas, often just a few feet from a garbage bin.
I cannot speak for everyone, but many of us were taught from an early age to avoid littering and to pack out what we brought in – at the very least to use the garbage cans that are conveniently situated all over the park.
We may have one of the largest and most beautiful inner city parks in North America (created and maintained with our tax dollars), but that does not entitle Regina and area citizens to dispose of their garbage wherever they want, expecting others to clean up the mess they left behind.
This apparent disregard for the environment can lead to public health and safety issues further on down the line. Please consider the long-term consequences of your actions and stop littering.
I was surprised when I discovered that individuals can be fined up to $2000 dollars and corporations up to $5000 dollars for violating park statutes. For further information, please refer to Parks and Open Space Bylaw Number 2004-27. Thank you.