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Community

Leo's Tree Farm

After hiking through the woods, sipping hot chocolate and roasting chestnuts on an open fire, many visitors to Leo’s Tree Farm develop a warm holiday glow, in spite of the cold. Some of them don’t even purchase a tree. And that suits Leo just fine.

Recently, as the busy harvest season was winding down, Leo de Wit chatted about his farm and led us along some of the trails he proudly shares with the public during the month of December. Leo planted 7,000 trees on his farm in 1985 because he likes them. He also wanted to forge a connection between rural and urban life by giving people a reason to visit a farm, so in 1996 he opened Leo’s Tree Farm. Since then, visitors have come to appreciate an experience which provides reasons for visiting well beyond that of just finding the “perfect” tree. The de Wits’ farm and home are set against woodlots of deciduous trees along with bush lots of the

conifers destined for Christmas festivities. Visitors are welcome to trek back through the woods in search of their tree, or to just enjoy the fresh air and a country walk in the woods. Many people stop to admire or have a photo taken beside the Native Trail Marker Tree. The de Wit family had always admired the sugar maple’s massive beauty, although they hadn’t been aware of the reason for its unique formation until recently. In the summer of 2013, a forester walking their bush recognized it as a Native Trail Marker Tree. These were created when a sapling was bent over and its leader tied or weighed down; later lateral branches except one or two were removed. Surviving examples are rare. Leo notes, “It’s on a historic river to lake trail and points toward Brock’s Creek. It was likely created about 300 years ago, so is probably one of the oldest man-made parts of history in the area!” Those who are on the hunt for just the right Christmas tree can select from pre-cuts or go out to one

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from

JEFF YUREK, MPP ELGIN-MIDDLESEX-LONDON

Here to help you with: Ontario Disability Support Program, OHIP Cards, Driver’s Licences, Ontario Works, Birth Certificates 750 Talbot Street, Suite 201, St. Thomas, ON, N5P 1E2 P: 519-631-0666 | T: 1-800-265-7638 E: jeff.yurekco@pc.ola.org | www.jeffyurekmpp.com

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RELISH ELGIN HOLIDAY 2015

Profile for Joanne Bagshaw

Relishelgin holiday2015 14 e  

Relish Elgin is a print and online magazine that promotes the people, places, businesses and events of St. Thomas & Elgin County, Ontario, C...

Relishelgin holiday2015 14 e  

Relish Elgin is a print and online magazine that promotes the people, places, businesses and events of St. Thomas & Elgin County, Ontario, C...

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