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SCOOP The

October / November 2017

thescoop.ca

Shining a Light on Trees

Alyce in Wonderland

Remembering Supertest

Speaking of Trees

Keeping Nature Near


Here’s The SCOOP

The

SCOOP E Founded in 2005 by Richard Saxe

PUBLISHER & AD SALES Karen Nordrum stonemills.scoop@gmail.com

CONTRIBUTORS Lillian Bufton, Catherine Coles,

very season has its special beauty, but fall tops them all, in our humble and unbiased opinion. For one obvious reason: trees. Watching their leaves turn from a uniform green to all varieties of gold, yellow, and red is an unfailingly spectacular experience. In this issue of The SCOOP, we celebrate and reflect on not just their beauty, but also the importance of our forests and trees in our daily lives. They help clean the air and water, beautify neighborhoods, provide homes for wildlife, conserve energy, and prevent soil erosion, among many other benefits. Many of us make our living with the help of trees. But trees and forests are perhaps most loved for their sheer beauty, which only literature or poetry is capable of capturing.

Joseph Imre, Susan Moore,

Fall is the season of poetry, as the weather gets colder, and the leaves change colour and fall. Please enjoy these two poems, one from legendary poet Henry Van Dyke, the other more recent, written in different styles, but which both celebrate the timelessness of trees and the beauty of this season.

Marcella Neely, Jazmin Radford,

Fall

Gary Dault, Dianne Dowling, Glen R. Goodhand, Alyce Gorter,

Susan Rehner, Barbara Roch, Mickey Sandell, Grace Smith, Terry Sprague All photos contributed, unless otherwise noted.

HOW TO CONTACT US 613.379.5369 stonemills.scoop@gmail.com thescoop.ca facebook.com/thescoop.ca Please write to us at: Stone Mills Scoop 482 Adair Road Tamworth, ON K0K 3G0 The SCOOP is published six times a year. We mail The SCOOP for free to more than 6600 households in Tamworth, Centreville, Enterprise, Erinsville, Camden East, Newburgh, Colebrook, Yarker, Verona, Hartington, Sydenham, Roblin, Selby, Parham, Kaladar,

Fall, falling, fallen. That’s the way the season Changes its tense in the long-haired maples That dot the road; the veiny hand-shaped leaves Redden on their branches (in a fiery competition With the final remaining cardinals) and then Begin to sidle and float through the air, at last Settling into colorful layers carpeting the ground. At twilight the light, too, is layered in the trees In a season of odd, dusky congruences—a scarlet tanager And the odor of burning leaves, a golden retriever Loping down the center of a wide street and the sun Setting behind smoke-filled trees in the distance, A gap opening up in the treetops and a bruised cloud Blamelessly filling the space with purples. Everything Changes and moves in the split second between summer’s Sprawling past and winter’s hard revision, one moment Pulling out of the station according to schedule, Another moment arriving on the next platform. It Happens almost like clockwork: the leaves drift away From their branches and gather slowly at our feet, Sliding over our ankles, and the season begins moving Around us even as its colorful weather moves us, Even as it pulls us into its dusty, twilit pockets. And every year there is a brief, startling moment When we pause in the middle of a long walk home and Suddenly feel something invisible and weightless Touching our shoulders, sweeping down from the air: It is the autumn wind pressing against our bodies; It is the changing light of fall falling on us.

Salute To The Trees Many a tree is found in the wood And every tree for its use is good: Some for the strength of the gnarled root, Some for the sweetness of flower or fruit; Some for shelter against the storm, And some to keep the hearth-stone warm; Some for the roof, and some for the beam, And some for a boat to breast the stream;— In the wealth of the wood since the world began The trees have offered their gifts to man. But the glory of trees is more than their gifts: ‘Tis a beautiful wonder of life that lifts, From a wrinkled seed in an earth-bound clod, A column, an arch in the temple of God, A pillar of power, a dome of delight, A shrine of song, and a joy of sight! Their roots are the nurses of rivers in birth; Their leaves are alive with the breath of the earth; They shelter the dwellings of man; and they bend O’er his grave with the look of a loving friend. I have camped in the whispering forest of pines, I have slept in the shadow of olives and vines; In the knees of an oak, at the foot of a palm I have found good rest and slumber’s balm. And now, when the morning gilds the boughs Of the vaulted elm at the door of my house, I open the window and make salute: “God bless thy branches and feed thy root! Thou hast lived before, live after me, Thou ancient, friendly, faithful tree.” —Henry Van Dyke (1852-1933)

Mon-Tue 10am-6pm • Wed-Fri 9am-6pm • Sat 9am-noon

—Edward Hirsch, from Wild Gratitude (1986)

Stella, Godfrey, & Marlbank. We also arrange with local retailers to display 1000 additional issues of The SCOOP in Napanee, Cloyne, Flinton, Kaladar, & many other locations.

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Eco Store & Naturopathic Clinic 46 Dundas Steet East, Napanee

All rights reserved. No reproduction by any means or any form may be made without prior written consent by the publisher.

COVER Autumn in the woods near Verona. Photo by Bill Kendall – for more of Bill’s local nature photos, visit @lakelifenaturals on Facebook. 2

The SCOOP • October / November 2017

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Letters [In the August/September 2017 issue of The SCOOP, the article “Help for an Endangered Species” by Nicole Senyi stated that] “less than 30 breeding pairs [of loggerhead shrikes] are remaining in the wild in North America.” But this seems unlikely in reference to loggerhead shrikes. Shrike researchers tell me that Loggerheads are still relatively common in the southern states. Less than 30 breeding pairs might be true for Loggerheads in Ontario. Numbers of Northern Shrikes are scarce because they are not covered by the Breeding Bird Survey. Perhaps we also ought to make clear that shrikes are birds of open areas

such as were commonly created by the “horse and buggy era”. Before that, it is unlikely that there were many large open areas. Without the horse and buggy impact on our landscapes, shrikes may not have been common at all. Shrikes may have been aided by our environmental impact. They may be an unusually endangered species. — Gray Merriam, Arden, Ont.

The SCOOP welcomes readers’ letters to the editor. Please email stonemills.scoop@gmail.com.

Garlic Guru Paul Pospisil (left) and NFU president Dianne Dowling (right) present Dorothy Oogarah (centre) of Wagar Oogarah Farm near Centreville with the trophy as 2017 Champion at the 21st annual Eastern Ontario Garlic Awards. Oogarah operates the Wagar family farm with her husband Viren and son Jesse. Photo by Craig Bakay.

Christmas Shopping Tour in the Country SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 4 Come to the Friends Meeting House in Moscow for a home cooked breakfast, then drive around Moscow, Colebrook, Yarker, & Camden East to find local artisans’ OOAK creations!

Do you love to write? We’re looking for contributors. Interested? Email us at:

For details, visit our Event page on Facebook: Christmas Shopping Tour in the Country

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2017-18 TECDC Concert Series Rita Chiarelli & her band Sweet Loretta

Fortunate Ones

Saturday, October 21

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The Ennis Sisters

The Stampeders

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Union Duke $35

Saturday, January 13

$30

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JUNO Award winner aka Canada’s Blues Queen, Rita Chiarelli and her 6-piece band will rock the blues away

Saturday, November 25

The Ontario government and Forests Ontario are challenging Ontarians to plant 3 million trees across the province. You can join in the fun by adding your trees to the online counter, by participating in community planting events or donating to plant trees across the province.

Paid for, in part, by the Government of Ontario

$35 Saturday, April 21

JUNO Award; SOCAN Award; Many East Coast Music Awards; Many Music Newf. & Labr. Awards; Folk songs with an Irish Newf. twist

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JUNO Award winners; 9 Gold & Platinum albums; 10 Top Ten hits incl. Sweet City Woman, Carry Me, Oh My Lady, Wild Eyes, & Hit The Road Jack

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2009 & 2011 JUNO Award; 2012 JUNO Nominee; 2012 Music Nova Scotia Folk Album of the Year; 2017 East Coast Music Award Album of the Year

$40 Saturday, May 12

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Saturday, February 10

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Make the trees you’re planting count!

Old Man Luedecke

Visit greenleafchallenge.ca to count your tree and to learn more about tree planting programs and resources in your local area. Call or visit us at:

Forests Ontario 1.877.646 .1193

For information or advance tickets call 613.379.2808 or email moliver@bell.net With support from the Government of Canada • • • • • • • • • • •

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October / November 2017 • The SCOOP

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Skeletons in the Closet

Public Notice

Grace Smith

Secondary Suites and Garden Suites are now permitted in most residentially zoned properties in the County of Lennox & Addington. These smaller units are an attractive and affordable form of housing for a wide variety of residents, providing new rental units and a source of income for the homeowner. Grants of up to $20,000 are available through Prince Edward Lennox & Addington Social Services for those homeowners who subsequently use the secondary suite or garden suite to provide affordable housing to low and moderate income tenants. If you are planning to build a secondary or garden suite within your home or as an addition you may qualify. Funding is limited and applications will be processed on a first come, first served basis. Once approved for the grant, projects must have a building permit within 30 days in order to remain eligible. For more information please contact: Annette Keogh Manager, Housing 613-354-0957 ext. 2501 1-866-354-0957 ext. 2501 akeogh@lennox-addington.on.ca

www.lennox-addington.on.ca

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all is by far my favourite season. I love the cool, crisp edge in the air, the coziness it brings about, and most of all, the spookiness it inspires. As some of you may know, I recently returned from an epic cross-Canada road trip. One of the themes of this trip was being a tourist in my own country, getting out to the see the nation that I live in, and appreciating everything that it has to offer. This October I’ve been inspired to bring this even closer to home. I plan to be a tourist in my own city. And what better way to accomplish this goal than to take in all the haunted sites that Kingston has to offer. Haunting is one area in which Kingston delivers. Being such an old city, Kingston is steeped in both history and mystery. Paranormal activity of all kinds has been reported all over the town for years and years. Ghost stories are as familiar as bedtime stories. If any of this sounds appealing to you, there are plenty of things to do and places to see before Halloween night. Perhaps the most popular way to learn about these terrifying places is to tour around with the Haunted Walk of Kingston. The original tour starts at the Prince George Hotel whose ghost stories revolve around forbidden love and fire. They also have a tour dedicated to perhaps Kingston’s most haunted location, Fort Henry. There have been sightings and mysterious activity in the old fort for years. The tour also includes some background on Deadman’s Bay, the site of many shipwrecks.

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If Fort Henry and its many secrets appeal to you, then look no further than Kingston’s most horrifying autumn attraction: Fort Fright. Fort Fright offers not just history on the spooky background of the fort but also good, scary fun with the many terrifyingly realistic characters lumbering around. It’s a great way to get out about and feel a little breathless. Another great local haunt is the notorious and aptly named Skeleton Park. Officially called McBurney Park, Skeleton Park sits atop a hill and houses all the typical features of a community park. And it used to be a graveyard. What’s more, is that when the city decided to move the graveyard they left some graves behind. It is said that you can see some headstones just peeking out of the grass in certain areas of the park. We can’t talk about Kingston without talking about Kingston Penitentiary. Canada’s Alcatraz has a history all its own, and we’re lucky enough to have the opportunity to explore this history. I can’t recommend touring the prison enough. Tucked right across the street is another gem in the form of the Penitentiary Museum. Learn about daring escape attempts and riots within the walls of Canada’s most notorious prison. So get off your couch (though I still do support the watching of scary movies in the lead-up to Halloween) and explore the spooks and haunts that Kingston has to offer. It really does have skeletons in its closet; you just have to find them.

New Legacy Centre GraND oPeNING New Legacy Centre, at 2 Concession St. S. (the 5 corners in Tamworth), has now been open for six months. A huge THANK YOU for all of the support we have and are still receiving. We are completing plans for the Grand Opening to be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, October 14. Everyone is welcome to attend. Please visit newlegacycentre.ca or contact Valerie Lynds at 613.331.2709 for more information.

WAYLEN CAR WASH UPCOMING DRIVER’S ED COURSE: October 14, 15, 22, 23 NDSS

Wash your area rugs, screens, and more before the winter months Dave & Barb Way 4

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The SCOOP • October / November 2017

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Time to start thinking about CHRISTMAS LIGHTS and SNOW SHOVELS - it’ll be here before we know it!

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Tuning into Trees Barbara Roch

W

hen my son recently visited from tree planting in a selectively cut forest, he brought 8-10” red pine seedlings, left over after the contract ended. We talked about worldwide deforestation, both rural and urban, and the efforts of many aiding the environment and humanity: one when you come to think about it. Thankfully, world trends are moving toward urban greening. When yard, street, and park trees intercept mega gallons of rainwater by capturing and slowing rainfall, their roots filter it and recharge the aquifer. Reduced stormwater runoff reduces flooding, which saves on stormwater management costs, protects shorelines, and decreases the flow of polluted waters. Scientific evidence supports the Japanese practice of forest bathing (being in the presence of trees), now part of their public health program. It lowers heart rates and blood pressure, reduces stress hormone production, and boosts the immune system. As improved overall feelings of well-being arise from inhaling trees’ various aerosols, it’s no wonder we feel fresher and better. (The yoga instructor in me nags me constantly: breathe deeply kiddo, it aerates the inverted tree of your tracheal trunk, bronchial branches and bronchiole limbs.) “Nature therapy” improves attention disorders, affirms my friend, a twentyyear senior educator at a local conservation authority. Recently, she treated me to a walk, and I was immersed in the woods as never before. She had taken an in-depth accredited program which blends rational-naturalist knowing with sensory-intuitive experience, resulting (to me) in a conscious awareness of the inter-relatedness of all beings. It’s now on their list of programs they offer to the public. Increasingly, science bears witness to the innate intelligence of trees: communication with their offspring, aromatic exchange of information about predators mounting altered chemical self – and group defence. A vast underground mycelial network (mushrooms are its

flowers so to say), has been compared to the nervous system of the world or the worldwide web. Its various species wrap around their favourite buddy trees in an intricate exchange of energy, moisture and nutrients. We benefit too when we reciprocate ecologically. I’m nearing Toronto where the impact of a recent Green Roof Bylaw on large residential, commercial, institutional, and industrial developments gladden the eye and heart. Multi-level grasses and forests, and “vertical green walls” are appearing, appealing. (Napanee’s town square features one with flowering annuals. I’m looking forward too, to visiting Kingston’s two new food forests). Catherine Cole, L&A’s director of library services, and I have been emailing in regards to showing Diana BeresfordKroeger’s recently completed documentary. Arguably North America’s foremost tree expert, she is an author, medical biochemist, and has other credentials as tall as a redwood. She’s all over the mycelia – I mean web. About those seedlings: Many foster parents in and around Napanee have been heeling and mulching them into their gardens for the winter. Some will grow there, benefiting especially the denuded downtown area. Networking, as the mycelial spread does, will continue for eventual placement with schools, hospitals, nursing/retirement homes, and individuals or families who benefit most from red pines’ pinene aerosols, with their brain (humans’, not the trees’) and immune boosting properties. Breathe deeply in the forest, advises Diana B-K: a half hour of which translates into a month of well-being. Alchemical well fare, I’d say. The bus arrives down the street from the hospital where my family member nears his worldly end. I pass colourful sidewalk paintings and the large words “healing, strength, love, hopeful.” In the courtyard to the hospital entrance, wooden, metal, and stone seating arrangements flank a grove of red pine gentle giants. Smiling, I pick up a fully opened cone, meet my sister, & soon place it on her beloved’s no longer ... beating ... heart.

Rumble in the Boutique Down! Trees must be slain, claim the beleaguered shopkeepers. Their roots are tripping us – nutlets raining down like cuss. Dirty: the sidewalks are smeared and stained. They’re a liability. Let’s not distract from the sales. Nature’s not needed’s the wail. Better concrete, asphalt, brick, and glass. ‘Big Dig’ a dozen roads. Now we have treeless abodes. Barren Bridge Street? No more birds tweet . . . alas. New pipes, new roads. No more roots poking holes. Hear the rumbling? Boutique stumbling! Replace, you ask? They’re a disgrace. They should be chained, contained – not be one more task. Boutique trees, now there’s a thought. No more dead leaves in a drought. Pretty treelets in a pot. Superb fake ones can be bought. . . . they’re overrated – who needs to breathe?

—Barbara Roch Barbara Roch gives foraging tours and lectures, and she thinks trees are pretty cool.

The Land We Call Home if we would ever see them mature. Luckily, we have, because our home is now among those pines.

Marcella Neely

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hen we talk about hardships in the rugged Land O’Lakes region, we don’t just mean those endured by early settlers, loggers, farmers, and merchants. The term aptly describes some of the experiences faced by newcomers well into the 1900s.

The first few summer vacations our son, Allan, and I spent here, were in a one-room shack, built by Arleigh, who was getting quite proficient with a hammer and saw, so we were comfortable.

Some prospective residents came as tourists and eventually retired here. My neighbours (seasonal) used to drive from St. Catharines in an old Model T – the journey took them eleven hours. Another area family would drive from Georgetown to the boat landing on Ashby Lake and then continue by motorboat to their cottage. (A road was built in 1984). One family from Skootamatta Lake would drive from Mississauga to Actinolite, and then load their gear onto a boat to travel across the river to their point on the lake. One might think these long trips would take place only once or twice a year, but surprisingly, they were often every weekend. Because services and supplies were not readily available, they had to bring what they needed or just make do without.

Allan, born and raised in cities, did not care for the country until he became acquainted with Roger Snider, Doro Levere, Elwin Spencer and Caird boys. Our early trips generally took us four and a half to five hours because there was no No. 401 Highway. Number 7 was gravel, made more hazardous, as it was in the process of widening and paving. When we came at night, which was often, it was very dark and lonely, with little traffic. In the few homes we passed, we could see an odd glimmer of a lamp inside, as few people had electricity, which is so commonplace today. In the intervening years, we had our home built with all we need to make us comfortable in our retirement. This occurred m the winter of 1969, when we moved from Toronto – here among the numerous friendly people.

Despite the hardships, many area residents chose to make the Land of Lakes their home. Here is a story first published in 1974 by the Cloyne & District Historical Society in the book “The Oxen and the Axe” that shows the resilience of the folks that make up our community…

That is what everyone is around here – true friends – who will do everything possible in every way to help when it is needed. Here we shall live, in health, God willing, until the end of our days.

•••

Our Kind of Country By Mildred Maitland

Stephen Lewis Foundation UPComING eVeNtS

Our parents were not pioneers in this district, nor were we born here. We live here by choice. We adopted this lonely part of the country in which to retire. So we were told as directors of the Pioneers that we rate space in this book.

October 26 at 7:00 p.m. Sydenham Public Library Carol Little will discuss her trip to Zambia and South Africa as a member of Grandmothers by the Lake. An African Heart Beat: A Musical Evening with all proceeds to The Stephen Lewis Foundation November 18 at 7:30 p.m. Trinity United Church hall Road #38 Verona Tickets are $10 at local businesses including Memory Lane Flowers Sydenham OR call Janet 613.375.9280

We bought our property in the fall of 1948. As there was practically nothing on it except a few small pine trees and brush near the water, we decided to try to improve it. So, in the spring we would leave Toronto early in the morning of my husband’s day “off ” and stop at Orono to pick up pine seedlings. Rain or shine – and it always seemed to be more rain than sunshine in those days – we would spend our day planting the wee trees. As we had no shelter, except the car, we would dash out between showers, plant a few seedlings and scoot back to the car until the worst of the downpour had subsided. We planted 2,500 seedlings, which of course did not all grow. At that time we were typical city folks, knowing as little about planting and the country as they did about us! At the end of the day, we would look at the results of our labour and wonder

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October / November 2017 • The SCOOP

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A Future with Trees Susan Rehner

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ell, another growing season is over and what a contrast with last year! You no doubt remember eastern Ontario’s record drought in 2016 — who could forget! – followed this year by record rainfalls. How could farmers have predicted the cool, wet summer this year and prepared for it? They are the ones most affected by weather extremes and unpredictability. Friends who are market gardeners had a disastrous 2016 when their wells, rain barrels and ponds ran dry. They exhausted themselves trying to keep their crops irrigated. This year, in response, they planted their corn in a low-lying, moist area. From all the rain this past spring and summer it became a semi-marsh. Under these unsuitable conditions, the corn finally ripened in mid-September, with such small ears the raccoons disdained to pillage the crop. Their other crops were slow too, mostly due to the lack of sunshine. On the other hand, the rainy spring and summer gave trees that had suffered from the lack of water last year a new lease on life. The rain also produced some spectacular flower gardens with lots of hummingbirds and many species of butterflies and bees present to sip the nectar and pollinate the flowers. I was delighted by the colourful and healthy array of flowers in my garden – Zinnias, Cosmos, Four O’Clocks, Tithonia, Coreopsis, Phlox, and Buddleia among the most notable. This year for the first

Since 1986

time our driveway is lined with wild Asters and Goldenrod and their attendant pollinators. Yes, the tomatoes and peppers were late, but they eventually ripened. And I much preferred the rain this summer to last year’s never-ending task of lugging heavy watering cans around (while there was still water in the rain barrels) and watching plants withering from the relentless sun, heat, and dryness. We have been told by climate experts that as a result of climate change we can expect more weather extremes in future. Certainly we have seen dramatic evidence of those extreme events this year in North America – floods, wildfires, and hurricanes have ravaged communities. Besides changing the way we live and tackling climate change head on, we can also do something on a small scale which will help alleviate the effects of drought and flooding within our communities: I’m thinking of trees. Trees have a moderating effect on weather. They provide cooling shade during hot, sunny conditions, and they take up great quantities of water, which reduces runoff during heavy rains. If you’ve ever walked into a woodland on a hot summer’s day, you will have noticed the cooling effect of trees immediately. And when rains persist, woodlands retain the excess rainwater and reduce the likelihood of flooding. Trees can also help you to reduce your carbon footprint. Strategically planting trees around your house – deciduous trees to the south, conifers to the north – will help keep your house cooler in the summer and protected in the winter, minimizing the need for air conditioning and heating.

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Most of us are not in a position to plant or maintain forests, but we can enhance the tree cover where we live. On a broader front, we can help protect and increase existing forest cover by supporting organizations that strive to reverse the loss of wildlife habitat. On Thursday, October 26, GrassRoots Growers will be

hosting an evening devoted to trees with speaker Tim Gray. Tim, who is a graduate of Sir Sandford Fleming College, worked for 30 years with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, subsequently with Trees Ontario, and currently with Forests Ontario. Over the years he has provided information and advice to hundreds of landowners and organizations on tree planting and forest management. Whether you have already planted hundreds of trees or you are considering planting one tree, you are sure to learn something of value from this presentation, including what is available regarding tree-planting initiatives and tax incentives. Tim will be bringing samples, displays and handouts as well. Also on that night, GrassRoots Growers will hold its fall seed exchange. Now is the time to collect seeds and bring your extras to the meeting. Please label them clearly and package them securely. The seed exchange is free, and if you are a starting gardener, don’t worry about not bringing seeds to trade. We will be happy to get you started. If you’re new to seed saving and want some practical advice, visit the GrassRoots Growers website (below), click on “Links”, and scroll down to consult “How to Save Seeds” prepared by steering committee member Lois Smith. In addition to the seed exchange, we expect to have a selection of cacti, succulents, and Eastern Cedar seedlings for sale at modest prices. The evening will conclude with refreshments and a chance to talk to others with similar interests. We hope

Tim Gray from Forests Ontario examines an American chestnut seed bur. we’ll see you there. GrassRoots Growers events are open to all and admission is free. However, if you wish to make a donation to help defray costs, it will be welcome. Tamworth/Erinsville GrassRoots Growers is a community-based group. Our mission is to encourage interest in local and organic gardening for both the home garden and the market garden; to raise awareness of issues surrounding food production; to improve our practical knowledge of all aspects of plant life; and to provide networking opportunities for gardeners. We welcome new members. Visit our website at te-grassrootsgrowers. weebly.com.

the t/e Grassroots Growers present Speaking of trees... with forests ontario field adviser tim Gray • • • • • • • •

Tree planting and maintenance Matching species to site conditions & soils Planting methods & site preparation Competition control Pruning Dealing with disease, pests & drought MFTIP – Managed Forest Tax Incentive Plan 50 Million Tree Program SEED EXCHANGE TO FOLLOW

• • •

Thursday, October 26 at 7:00 p.m. St. Patrick School, 6041 Hwy. 41, Erinsville ~ All Are Welcome ~ Free Admittance Refreshments to follow presentation Donations gratefully accepted to help cover costs

For more information, email us at tegrassrootsgrowers@gmail.com Or visit our website: www.te-grassrootsgrowers.weebly.com

Your local land trust invites you to an afternoon about nature. Look at some cool local maps. Talk to experts. Enjoy refreshments. Learn more about the land you love.

Sunday, October 29, 2 to 4

Community Room, Sydenham Library 4412 Wheatley Street, Sydenham 6

The SCOOP • October / November 2017

LandConservancyKFLA.org


Do You Remember: The Supertest Sign? Glen R. Goodhand

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ccording to the Petroleum Historical Society, there have been 435 companies producing petroleum between 1873 and 2009. Of those, 73 focused on providing gasoline for automobiles. Most of the latter number were either short-lived or of little historical significance in the big picture. Gasoline was first retailed by pharmacies—a sideline from their main businesses. They were called filling stations and had their dispensing apparatus at the curb in front of their premises. Facilities providing fuel for motorists as their primary function first entered the commercial scene around 1905. At first, attendants filled five-gallon cans from their tanks and then poured its contests into cars. It was not until 1910 that gas was dispensed directly into vehicles. Eventually, some three years later, drivers pulled off the beaten path into an area that would eventually be known as service stations. In those early years, travellers were made aware of a refuelling location in one of two ways: either a simple sign which read “Gas,� or a small building set back from the road sporting a gas pump, or “bowser,� as they were often called, was evident. Like most things, the evolution of the service station scene was gradual. A rare sight indeed was a photo of a filling station in 1924 which featured a huge circular sign prominently hung announcing that “Texaco� petrol was available there (“Texaco� indicated the Texas Oil Company refined the gasoline). By the early 1930s, more and more of these colourful metal placards dotted town and city streets and highways,

inviting the public to make this or that brand their choice for fuel. The first gas pumps were towering metal dispensers, with tall glass globes on top (usually a round insignia spelled the name of the brand of fuel). Horizontal lines marking the number of gallons were prominently displayed. Whether the fuel was being forced into these “bowls� by the back and forth movement of a hand pump or was poured into the customer’s vehicle, the quantity involved was conveniently seen by attendant or buyer. By 1940, newer-style pumps clocked the number of gallons on a dial enclosed in a window on the face of the bowser. It wasn’t until the mid-1980s that the “self-serve� format came into prominence. Before then, the proprietor had to leave the work he was doing in the service bays to serve customers (for as little as 50 cents worth of fuel) or hire a full-time attendant to look after this duty. For a half a century, a dozen brands of gasoline dominated the filling station community: Amoco, B/A, Chevron, Cities Service, Esso, Joy, Reliance, Shell, Sunoco, Supertest, Texaco, and White Rose. A number of these familiar retailers simply petered out. Others were purchased or amalgamated with other companies. Cities Service became part of Citgo, B/A became Gulf, and White Rose was bought out by Shell. But one conglomerate stood out above the rest—not because it was the largest or richest—but because of its bright orange colour-scheme; it’s “All Canadian� identity; and its sponsorship of a famous hydroplane boat in races. The founding and growth of the Supertest Petroleum Company reads almost like a fairytale.

In 1923, John Gordon Thompson and James D. Good bought the assets of the Energy Oil Company for $10,000. Their purchase included a run-down gas station on Dundas St. in London; a bulk storage tank in that same city; and two fuel delivery tank trucks. They adopted “Supertest� as their trademark name; made arrangements to purchase gasoline from Imperial Oil, and opened their first gas station, where fuel sold for 31 cents a gallon (7 cents a litre). Six months later, their company was incorporated as “Supertest Petroleum Corporation Limited.� By 1936, the company owned and operated 342 stations and boasted 800 dealers in Ontario and Quebec. They owned 100 trucks and employed over 500 people. The orange maple leaf encircled in green, with “Canada’s All Canadian Gasoline� inscribed in a ribbon insignia, became a familiar sight in Eastern Canada. They promoted their product as “Wonder Gasoline,� and challenged the public to “take the full tank test.� It was Supertest that introduced the “service� in “service station�. Two attendants wearing dark shirts and white bow ties greeted the customers; and while one poured gas, the other checked the oil, radiator, and tires before washing the windshield. Their first step into community involvement took place in 1944 when they backed the “Supertest Stake Races,� a harness racing event. They followed up in 1966, sponsoring a tournament for the Ladies Professional Golf Association – the “Supertest Ladies’ Open.� But the company really made a name for itself through powerboat racing. In 1950, Thompson purchased a highly rated

hydroplane and named it “Miss Supertest.� Driver Bob Hayward promptly drove her to first place and won the Harmsworth Trophy. Four years later “Miss Supertest II� was built. This craft sported a 2000 horsepower engine and captured the world speed record—184.4 MPH (296.7 km/h). In 1959, Hayward regained the Harmsworth Trophy in a race on the Detroit River, this time with the third Miss Supertest. In 1960 and 1961, he repeated wins on Lake Ontario near Picton, Ontario. Tragically, he was killed in the 1961 Silver Cup Regatta on the Detroit River—and the Thompsons gave up powerboat racing. In 1971, after nearly 50 years, Supertest was sold to BP (British Petroleum). From that point, the familiar Maple Leaf logo and the polished orange glow were gradually phased out. There are far fewer major gasoline companies competing for the consumer dollar in the New Millennium—with Esso, Petro Canada, and Shell leading the pack. Like Texaco, Sunoco, White Rose, and Cities Service, Supertest—with its unique identity and presence—is gone, but not forgotten.

THE BOOK SHOP Bridge St. E. at the foot of Peel

TAMWORTH

Coming Christmas Events in Tamworth

www.tamworthbookshop.com

Sponsored by the Christmas Events Commiee (TECDC)

info@tamworthbookshop.com

Christmas Carolling and Tree Lighting

Fri-Sat-Sun, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

613-379-2108

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 5:30 P.M. Tamworth Library, refreshments will be served. Thanks to Robert Storring of C21 Lanthorn Real Estate for the refreshments Please bring non-perishable food items for the Lions Club Christmas Hamper.

Village Christmas Craft Fair

www.mini-mutts.ca (613)

601-7833

348 Holden Rd, Roblin, ON

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 3, 10:00 A.M. - 3:00 P.M. Tamworth Library and two main street stores Please bring non-perishable food items for the Lions Club Christmas Hamper.

Royal Canadian Legion #458 Santa Claus Parade

For small and medium sized dogs up to 50lbs.

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 3, 1:00 P.M. Crafts and refreshments at the Legion after parade, and bring your leers for Santa! Please bring non-perishable food items for the Lions Club Christmas Hamper.

READING

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Stan Dragland & Phil Hall SUNDAY, OCTOBER 22 Free event @ 2 p.m. All are welcome October / November 2017 • The SCOOP

7


A Natural View The Falling Leaves Drift by My Window shouted over the phone. “Don’t we have enough leaves to rake in the fall as it is?”

Terry Sprague

O

ne of the most bizarre phone calls I ever received during my career with Quinte Conservation was from a lady who responded to a recent tree planting initiative we had promoted. Expecting praise for our efforts to champion the planting of trees to combat the greenhouse effect and their overall soothing and relaxing properties, I was instead met with a barrage of abusive comments.

It was one of those classic moments when you take the phone from your ear, hold it out in front of you, and stare at it in disbelief. I have friends who live in a forest of trees and falling leaves. Every autumn, their house is blanketed in leaves, their driveway and their lawn become unrecognizable. Yet, the owners of this property treat these leaves like gold. They spread out a large tarpaulin, rake the leaves onto it, and then drag their harvest of leaves to their garden, using their efforts as fertilizer and compost. They have learned how to make use of a complementary product.

“What is wrong with you people?” she

Northumberland County Forest, north of Cobourg. Photo by Louisa Ielo.

MIKE BOSSIO, M.P. Member of Parliament for Hastings—Lennox and Addington Main Office: 20-B Richmond Blvd, Napanee (Mon-Fri, 9am to 4pm) Satellite office hours throughout the riding—call for details!

mike.bossio@parl.gc.ca | Toll Free: 1-866-471-3800 www.mikebossiomp.ca

At our home, we waited for almost 30 years for leaves so we could do much the same thing. It took our trees that long to produce. Some are added annually to a large compost pile, and some are used to insulate sensitive garden plants. The majority of the leaves, however, are ground into dust with our recycling mower, forcing the pulverized material into the soil to provide nutrients. Almost daily, I am mulching these leaves here and there around our two-acre property, until the last leaf has fallen from the trees. Ignoring large quantities of leaves that fall every autumn is not a wise option. Leaves that are not removed or ground up with a mulching mower will block sunlight and air from reaching the grass. Rain and early snowfalls accentuate the problem by turning these fluffy layers of leaves into

soggy mats. The resulting lack of air circulation can smother the grass or attract disease. In the soil, some micro-organisms go right to work in utilizing the leaves that I have pulverized by breaking them down even further so they can be used by the grass. The decomposing leaves cover any bare spots between the blades of grass, thereby making it more difficult for weeds to emerge in the spring.

Leaves should never be thought of as a nuisance but as a valuable resource. Frontenac Provincial Park. Photo by Mike Burge.

Studies apparently have found that there can be an almost major decrease in dandelions and crabgrass after mulching fall leaves after only three years, according to the Mother Nature Network website. As a rule though, I don’t worry too much about dandelions in the spring on our lawn anyway. They have a short season and provide some colour in the spring when they are blooming. However, closer to the house where I have been mulching leaves every fall, I have noted a marked decrease in their presence, so there is some truth to that claim. Mulching mowers are more than just conventional mowers with the side discharge chute blocked off; they have specially designed blades that work efficiently to pulverize the leaves into a fine, almost dusty material. I have mulched in all kinds of weather and conditions, but the best job is done right after a heavy frost when the leaves are brittle. Personally, I don’t like to leave the job that long, as I am anxious to service my mowers and put them to bed for the winter by sharpening the blades, stabilizing the gas, changing the oil, and cleaning up the machines with my air compressor. Mostly, I recycle leaves because it is the responsible thing to do on our property. My philosophy has always been to reuse everything that Nature has provided. That also applies to tree limbs that I prune annually. Some are put through a wood chipper to be used as mulch around the trees, while others are added to a brush pile to serve as wildlife habitat. Others serve as tinder for an

outdoor fire pit that we enjoy whenever we are sitting outside under our maple tree. Everything is used, and branches produced in our yard, stay in our yard. Nothing goes to the roadside. Nothing goes to the dump. Back to the issue of leaves, I have always found the whole exercise of leaf drop very fascinating. It marks the close of the fall season, accented by a riot of falling colours. The ceremony, of course, is a deliberate action on the part of a tree, as it helps the tree survive the cold. No longer can the tree afford to lose moisture through transpiration as it did during summer. It must preserve any moisture that it can get through winter, so it must drop its leaves. I have been trained to believe that in Nature everything happens for a reason. Why beech trees retain their dead leaves through winter has always been a mystery that I continue to research though. But, in Nature, if we knew all the answers, the enjoyment of Nature would lose its appeal very quickly. The fall colour, the unique shapes of leaves peculiar to each species, their photosynthesis, the heady autumn fragrance of decomposing leaves, their usefulness in our lives, and the entire fascinating process from spring through fall. The woman who called me had missed out on all this throughout her life. How can one not feel sorry for someone like that? Terry Sprague lives in Prince Edward County and is a retired interpretive naturalist and hike leader. See his website at www.naturestuff.net . He can be reached at tsprague@xplornet.com

You are invited … Monday, October 23, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Roblin Community Hall, 3264 County Road 41

8

Alvar and grassland environments of the Limestone Plain Mark Stabb, Nature Conservancy of Canada

Natural heritage planning

Local ecology maps

Refreshments

The SCOOP • October / November 2017

LandConservancyKFLA.org


Other People Have Adventures Too Alyce Gorter

T

hose who happen to experience an adventure may not always refer to the event by that word. In some instances, they may not ever refer to it at all or, if they do, the reference may not be printable. However, it is a fact that other people do have adventures. Case in point is a local farmer – we’ll call him Bawb to preserve his identity and save him from a potential onslaught of autograph hounds. But before I tell his story, it may be helpful to set the scene by providing a bit of historical background. Teams of horses played a large part in the early years of Canada’s history. In fact, by 1921 almost every Canadian farmer was a horseman. Having a well-matched team of horses not only meant an easier workload for the horses but also was a source of pride for the farmer. It was not an easy task to find two horses that were identical in colour, temperament, and training, as well as suitable in size for the job for which they were required. For some of these teamsters, putting such a span together became a lifelong obsession. Bawb came from such ancestry, and his dream was to obtain somehow that perfect team. When he found the dark bay, lightweight, half-brothers that were almost impossible to tell apart, he was sure that a few months of training was all that stood between him and the fulfillment of that fantasy. The phone call came on a colourful, sunny afternoon in early fall. Did I want to go for a wagon ride behind Bawb’s personally trained, prized ponies? Yes! Of course! A pleasant ride through the autumn colours would be lovely, thank you, I’ll be right there. It happened that my young friend Jess was visiting me, and she too thought that would be an excellent way to while away a few hours. The team was already harnessed by the time we arrived, their bridles snapped to rings on the outside of the stable. With our enthusiasm running strong it didn’t take long to hitch up the wagon and throw a couple of hay bales on it for seats. Bawb took up position as the driver, reins in hand, on one bale and Jess parked herself on the other. My job was to unsnap the horses from the wall and clamber aboard. I could either struggle for space with Jess or bounce around on the hard wagon planks. It wasn’t much of a choice but I picked the planks, not realizing at the time that it was a bit like trying to choose the most comfortable cabin on the Titanic – the decision wasn’t going to change the big picture. I was immediately impressed with the snappy little team. As soon as I released the horses from their anchor, they arched their necks, tautened the traces, and stepped lively off down the road. Since Bawb’s usual choice of horses leant more toward the heavy, slower-moving Belgian

drafts, my eyebrows lifted in quick surprise and heightened appreciation of his latest selections. I had to scramble to catch the tail end of the wagon. The first half of the journey was quite enjoyable and entirely without mishap. Don’t let that mislead you, the second half of the trip was just as enjoyable – for me, at least – just not without mishap. We turned around – nicely done — and then headed for home. Looking back, I suspect that this is actually where the adventure began. I don’t know whether the horses suddenly remembered how much easier it was just standing around munching hay than it was to pull a hay wagon and decided to get back to that comfort zone or the increasing car and 4-wheeler traffic was starting to make them nervous. Whatever the cause, the peppy steeds picked up their knees a little higher and increased their pace once again. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Bawb wrap the reins tightly around his hands. I didn’t think that was a common driving practice and the thought crossed my mind that all might not be proceeding according to plan. However, there was no time to ponder the matter then, and later it was impossible to determine if this was his first mistake. It rapidly became apparent though that it certainly wasn’t his last. When we pulled to the shoulder of the road to allow room for an oncoming car, the horse on the right crowded too far over, dropping unexpectedly down into the ditch. It was by no means a shallow trench, and when the right, front wagon wheel rolled merrily right in after the horse it threw the wagon, horses, and passengers all off kilter. Maybe it was the abrupt impact of brain against skull that made me suddenly realize that I could remain on the severely tilted wagon and play a role as victim in whatever was about to unfold or I could be of better use if I evacuated the ship and became an “on-the-spot reporter”. There seemed little incentive to select Option One. Apparently, at about the same time, Jess had had a similar epiphany, and it was a simple matter – just seconds before the world collapsed– for us to nimbly step off the wagon into the middle of the road. It was an excellent vantage point to see what happened next. As the wagon suddenly slanted precariously, its weight was drastically thrown off balance creating an uneven pressure on both horses that they had never before experienced. The horse still teetering on the edge of the road must have been surprised by his teammate’s quick drop in height and by the force that was now pulling him towards the ditch. Apparently, he saw no reason to put up any fight against gravity and took a wild jump to join his brother. The first horse, caught off guard by both the unexpected load adjustment and the impact of his sibling’s impetuous leap, instinctively responded to whatever

danger must have triggered these actions by attempting to leave the scene as quickly as possible. Fanning each other’s fear, they joined in a precipitous flight at a ninety-degree angle to the road. When they hit the page wire fence, it did little to slow down the team, but the wheels of the wagon were instantly trapped bringing the wagon to an abrupt halt and breaking the connection between horses and vehicle. Bawb, still tied to the horses (remember the reins wrapped around his hands) but not to the wagon, was catapulted off the hay bale as though shot out of a cannon. The reins were jerked from his grasp and with arms stiffly at his sides and bald head gleaming in the afternoon sun he flew over the fence in a perfect arc looking like a bald eagle launched from a slingshot. This put me in a serious dilemma — like watching a really exciting two-ring circus. I was impressed by Bawb’s trajectory and wanted to watch him land but, just as badly, I wanted to keep my eyes on the team. The team won out.

Living in the bush in Eastern Ontario, writer Alyce Gorter lives life with a unique perspective, finding humour where you might least expect it. Out of an ordinary life of family, faith and friends, comes an extraordinary life of unique – and sometimes hazardous – experiences. Her recently published book of stories, poems, graphics, and photos showcases how this modern day “Alyce in Wonderland” has embraced life as a bold, exciting adventure.

It was better than any Readers can buy Alyce’s book at the Tamworth Book movie! The horses, released Shop, by email at alyce@gorter.ca, or by telephone at from human control but 613.375.7371. still joined by the harness, had pawed their way through the fence and were now galloping away across the field in perfect unison. Obviously, all that training had not been completely wasted. The field, overgrown with brush and weeds, was bordered on the left by a tract of trees and on the right by the fence, which together shaped the field into a runway. As the horses raced down this open stretch, they headed straight for the lone tree that stood smack dab in the middle of this terrain. The tree, about eight inches in diameter, was small enough to let the horses go one on either side but robust enough to withstand the shock of a panicked ton of horseflesh hitting it in full force. The team was brought to a swift but momentary halt. The harness, with all connecting straps having been severed by the impact, melted in heaps to the ground. The freed geldings hit high gear once again, quickly disappearing into the back of beyond. The following week the ad read, “For Sale: Well-matched, dark bay team of horses. Broke.” It was an accurate description. And, as the “on-the-scene reporter”, I can tell you exactly what it was they broke.

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October / November 2017 • The SCOOP

9


A Potter’s Country Tale Lillian Bufton

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hen you’re a potter, spending hours each day at a potter’s wheel, as Diane Creber did for 45 years, you have plenty of time to think. For some of those hours, Diane amused herself making up stories about the people who live in the sleepy hamlet of Haystack, a small rural community that bears a striking resemblance to Wilton. Diane and her husband, artist Tim De Rose, operated the Wilton Pottery for more than four decades in the tiny Hamlet of Wilton in Eastern Ontario, now known by Canada Post as RR#2, Odessa. In 2016 they retired as potters and sold their beloved Wilton Pottery.

While they were building a new house on a lake north of Sydenham, Diane somehow found the time to write down the stories that had filled her head for all those years and to shape them into a novel, titled RR#2. The book was recently launched in the Wilton Community Hall. Like Wilton, the little community in Diane’s novel suffers the loss of its school, its church, and its post office. All its kids have to be bused to the next village, and its worshippers must join the parishes of other towns. Along with the loss of its post office, Haystack loses even its own address and becomes merely a rural route of another community. Around this time, a young couple from the city move to Haystack to start married life. The adjustment to country

CALLING ALL PHOTOGRAPHERS AND ARTISTS! Do you have what it takes to be published in The SCOOP? Send us your best photos and artwork documenting rural life in our area: RR #2, by Diane Creber, $22.50 paper Published summer 2017, Woodpecker Lane Press, Kingston, ON, K7K 5E2 http://www. woodpeckerlanepress.com

stonemills.scoop@gmail.com

The SCOOP • October / November 2017

CONTACT Direct: Office: Toll Free:

SALMON RIVER CABIN CANOE OR KAYAK for miles from this GET AWAY cabin in the woods. Not the Ritz but a great hideaway surrounded with mature pines and hardwoods. Fronts the Salmon River from which you can travel into various lakes and could even go all the way to Lake Ontario. 2 bdrms, kitchen, big living rm, big deck. No hydro but at the lot line, no plumbing but the privy is clean. A great place to preserve your sanity in this fast-paced world. $99,500 MLS 361690032

STARTER HOME?

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Diane was born in Montreal and lived in Montreal, Toronto, and Ossining, New

She has won numerous awards for her work, provincially, nationally, and internationally, and was nominated for the Saidye Bronfman Award for excellence in fine craft in 2011.

14 Concession St. Tamworth

Established since 1922

Licensed by the Ministry of the Environment

Readers may be tempted to see Joe Andrews as a fictionalized version of Diane’s husband, but they’d be wrong. Like all the characters in her book, he’s part composite, part invention. Diane stresses that her book is a complete work of fiction. However, she says her friends and former neighbours are carefully checking the pages, “to see if they’re in it!”

York, before moving to Wilton. She studied painting at the Art Students League in NYC, graduated from the Ontario College of Art (now OCAD University), and went on to major in ceramics at Sheridan College School of Design. She has been an art teacher at Napanee District Secondary School and has taught art part-time at McArthur College of Queen’s University.

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RR#2 is a dramatic departure from that first book. It’s often hilarious, sometimes sad, sometimes nail-bitingly suspenseful – as when Joe Andrews sets out on a kayak adventure down the river far too early in the spring.

OFFICES 44 Industrial Blvd. Napanee

Diane will be reading from her book on Thursday, October 5th at Novel Idea, Princess Street, Kingston.

Prompt service Free estimates Pump installations & service Wells decommissioned & abandoned

RR#2 is Diane’s first novel, but it is her second book. Her first, Crystalline Glazes, is a guide for both student and experienced potters experimenting with the ceramic technique. For its second edition, Diane added profiles of the work of 14 potters from around the globe. The book has been used extensively throughout the arts and crafts field.

Robert Storring

Readers can buy the book at these locations: – Novel Idea, 156 Princess Street, Kingston – The Wilton General Store, Village of Wilton – Trousdale’s General Store, Sydenham – Woodpecker Lane Press woodpeckerlanepress@gmail.com – directly from Diane by phone: 613.770.9912 or email wiltonpottery@xplornet.ca

• • • •

living is somewhat of a shock – particularly the fascination their every action seems to hold for all their new neighbours, from planting a garden to trying to raise livestock.

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NEAR BEAVER LAKE Exposed beams, in-floor heating, super insulation, private master suite and large eat-in kitchen. The master w/ensuite bath and walk-in closet, fully separated from the 3 kids’ bdrms. Oak kitchen w/ island and loads of cupboard/counter space, ceramic tile flooring, and patio doors to deck. Main floor laundry and extra office or den are off the kitchen. Walk to the lake in 3 minutes for boating, canoeing, fishing or swimming. $239,900 MLS 450460280

NEW PRICE HORSESHOE LAKE LOT has 300 ft frontage, level to shore, elevated toward rd. Good docks, storage shed & older camper trailer. $159,900 MLS 361640112 I HAVE HAD A BUSY SELLING SEASON AND NOW FIND MYSELF IN SHORT SUPPLY OF ALL TYPES OF LISTINGS. FOR A FREE, NO OBLIGATION, EVALUATION, AND AN OPPORTUNITY FOR WORLD WIDE COVERAGE, GIVE ME A CALL NOW.

613-379-2903 613-354-4347 1 866-233-2062 storring@kos.net robert.storring@century21.ca


Keeping Nature Near… Always Mickey Sandell

I

magine seeing the night sky as only the moon and a very few of the brightest stars. When Bruce Millen went to a meeting in a rural area a few years ago, he met two men from New York City. They were astonished to see the multitude of stars in the night sky now that they were away from city lights. “I was shocked to realize that some people never see the stars or the Milky Way,” says Millen, who treasures the time he spends on a wild property in Central Frontenac. “I was reminded that we are lucky to live in a part of the world where we get to see the natural world, on the ground and in the sky, so easily.” “Keeping nature near… always” is the motto of the Land Conservancy for

The Salmon River feeds into the Bay of Quinte. It still runs wild and free at its source. Photo by Janet Elliott.

Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington. The not-for-profit charity was established in 2004 and already owns six properties and holds two conservation easements, protecting over 200 hectares (500 acres) of habitat. “We are working to conserve spaces for nature, places where animals and plants can thrive, where nature’s processes can take place with a minimum of human interference,” explains Paul Mackenzie, chair of the Land Conservancy’s land acquisition committee. Working collaboratively with other organizations, the Land Conservancy aims to maintain the natural links connecting protected lands, such as between the Frontenac Arch in the east of the region and Puzzle Lake Provincial Park in the west. “Looking at the already-protected areas in Frontenac County and Lennox and Addington County, we are developing maps that identify priorities for land stewardship and conservation activities,” says Dr. Kate Laird, chair of the group’s mapping committee. “As a local land trust, we can help municipalities and landowners to recognize the most valuable land from an ecological perspective and contribute to everyone’s efforts to protect our lakes and rivers, and vital forest areas.” The Land Conservancy received a grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation to explore the potential to work with other groups on a natural heritage strategy. Members of the group have consulted with municipalities, conservation authorities, and other conservation organizations including Ducks Unlimited, Friends of the Napanee River, and the

Frontenac Stewardship Foundation. Laird reports that they have been spending the last several months collecting data about this area and learning from others about their conservation concerns. “We are getting ready to share our maps with conservation partners and the public.”

A male Scarlet Tanager, a local bird that is here in summer. Despite its bright colour, it is difficult to spot as it likes to stay at the top of the leafy forest canopy. Photo by Paul Mackenzie. Shield habitats.

Two public meetings are scheduled in October. On Monday, October 23rd, the Land Conservancy is hosting a meeting at the Roblin Community Hall, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Mark Stabb, program director for the Nature Conservancy of Ontario for Central Ontario-East, will be talking about the Limestone Plain and the unique alvar and grassland environments found there. On Sunday, October 29th, the meeting will begin at 2 p.m. at the Community Room, in the Sydenham Public Library. Attendees will hear about conservation work in the area and have a chance to talk to local naturalists about Canadian

Both meetings will feature maps showing the ecological features of this area, including headwaters, provincially significant wetlands, larger forest blocks, and Areas of Natural and Scientific Interest. Refreshments will be served. “We hope a lot of people will come out to the meetings to see the land they love in a larger context, learning more about the ecology of this region,” says Laird. “We are lucky to live in a part of Ontario where we still have a chance to get the right balance between human use and habitat conservation.” More information about the Land Conservancy and the October meetings is available on the group’s website: www. LandConservancyKFLA.org.

As We Near the End of 2017… Catherine Coles

W

hile the year may be wrapping up, during October, November and beyond, the County of Lennox & Addington Libraries will be as busy as ever! Here’s a sample of some of our upcoming programs and events. For more details or a complete listing, be sure to visit CountyLibrary.ca.

For Children & Families New this year, we will be offering special PA DAYS at our Amherstview and Napanee Branches. Coming up next are Halloween Parties on October 27 (10:30 a.m. in Napanee, 2 p.m. in Amherstview) and the always-popular Total Aquatics Reptile Shows on November 24 (same times).

We’ve Got An Agent For You! Todd Steele 613-354-4810

Jesslynn Millen 613-372-2980

Andrea Blasko 343-363-1064

Rick Bowen 613-354-4810

Nikole Walters 613-372-2980

Brian Powley 613-374-3888

Sally Blasko 613-353-2739

Susan L. Wright 613-373-9733

Kathy McCaffrey 613-378-6847

Tracey Moffat 613-353-2528

1-800-267-7812

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We have been running STORYTIME WITH SANTA as an annual event for several years now. This year, we will be adding a location: Yarker! Children and families are welcome to join us in Napanee (December 2 at 10:30 a.m.), Yarker (December 4 at 6:30 p.m.) or Amherstview (December 6 at 10:30 a.m.) for a storytime visit from Santa Claus himself. There will be crafts, activities and staged family photos with Santa. Regular programs for children include STORYTIME and MAKER CLUB. New this season are weekly story sessions in Bath (each Tuesday at

10:30 a.m.) and Yarker (each Thursday at 10:30 a.m.) Remember that we are also now running MAKER CLUB in Tamworth each Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. It is an opportunity to complete fun “maker” challenges using a variety of materials.

For Adults The library’s big event, our 4TH ANNUAL AUTHOR GALA, will be held on October 28 at 2 p.m. at the County Museum & Archives in Napanee. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online. Check CountyLibrary.ca for availability. This year’s featured author is Vicki Delany, a cozy mystery writer. Delany’s novel Elementary, She Read, the first in a Sherlock Holmes-inspired series, was our selection for ONE BOOK, ONE L&A 2017. This means that many readers in L&A County are familiar with Delany’s fun mysteries and will be eager to hear her speak at the event. Another event we will be holding at the County Museum & Archives is a special TUESDAY NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM run in partnership between the library and museum. It will feature Lawrence Scanlan, a bestselling author. His latest book, They Desire a Better Country: The Order of Canada in 50 Stories, was commissioned by the Governor General to coincide with Canada’s 150th. It highlights some of the remarkable individuals who have received the prestigious Order of Canada. Join us in celebrating the achievements and hearing the stories of these fascinating Canadians. Our adult crafting program CRAFTWORKS is back in December with an “Ugly Christmas Sweater” craft at the Napanee (3:00 p.m.) and Bath (6:30 p.m.)

branches on December 18. Registration is required so we can plan for supplies. It should be a fun and festive event! Also worth noting is our ART IN THE LIBRARY display in Napanee, which features local artists Joan Salomaa and Elaine Taranu until October 31, and Gabriel Deerman and Lori Forester from November 6 to December 29.

For Everyone! FOOD4FINES is back for the entire month of December. During this period, all branch locations will accept nonperishable food items in place of cash for overdue library fines. FOOD4FINES provides library users with the opportunity to clear their record, return overdue materials, and support local food banks. During the program fines for items are waived on a one to one ratio; it’s simply one item of food for one dollar of outstanding fees. Fees for lost or damaged books are not eligible. Fines often act as barriers to library patrons, and by removing small fines the library can encourage customers to come back to the Library and use its services. All donations through this program are redistributed to food banks within the County of Lennox & Addington. We hope to see you out and about at the library branches over the next few months. If you have program ideas or suggestions you would like to share, please drop a line to Patricia Richard, Programming & Outreach Coordinator, at prichard@lennox-addington.on.ca. We are always happy to receive feedback from the community regarding our programs and services.

October / November 2017 • The SCOOP

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Kingston Area Seed System Initiative (KASSI) the seed collection, and a location for education and community activities related to seeds.

Dianne Dowling

W

e can’t have real food security unless we have seed security.

KASSI’s major public event each year is Seedy Saturday, an opportunity to buy, sell, and trade seeds. Seedy Saturdays (and Sundays) are held across Canada, with the one in Kingston scheduled for the second Saturday in March – March 10 in 2018. As well as the popular seed swap table, several local and regional seed companies will be on hand to sell seeds and workshops on seed saving and gardening will be presented.

“The majority of our land-based food originates with seeds,” says Kathy Rothermel, a farmer on Wolfe Island and chair of the Kingston Area Seed System Initiative (KASSI). “So whoever controls seeds, controls our food system.” “Growing, storing and sharing our own locallyadapted seed is essential to having a truly selfreliant, resilient local food system.” Simply put, seeds grow food. This realization led Rothermel and three other people to come together in 2011, to work on increasing the number of people saving, storing, and sharing locally adapted seed. In 2016, KASSI became a not-for-profit corporation, with a mission to increase our community’s seed heritage and to build a seed centre for the Kingston region. “In 2007, ten multinational corporations controlled two-thirds of the world’s proprietary seeds,” Kathy says. “Over 90% of vegetable varieties carried in seed catalogues in the 1900s are now extinct, due to the consolidation of seed production in a few hands. Seeds that were naturally selected by our ancestors for over 12,000 years, and that are part of the human commons, are now being patented by corporations. That’s a very scary situation. “We want to build a local seed system, where many, many people are saving seeds for themselves, and where local seed companies are growing locally adapted seed, storing it here and supplying it to local customers. We think a system like that makes our food system more resilient to climate change and makes our communities more self-reliant and self-sufficient.” KASSI is a grassroots organization founded by local farmers, backyard and market gardeners and concerned community members, to promote responsible stewardship of our seed heritage by growing open-pollinated heirloom varieties and conserving their seed. “Our goals are to ensure sustainable local food production by helping build a healthy regional seed system, growing out and distributing heirloom and locally adapted seed, and creating a network of regional growers,” Kathy says. “We believe these objectives will help increase seed security, and, consequently, improve food security for the Kingston region.”

“Our first Seedy Saturday was a small gathering on Wolfe Island 11 years ago,” says Kathy. “Every two or three years we have had to move to a bigger location to accommodate the growing number of vendors, community groups with displays and people attending. It’s a lovely, positive way to spend a Saturday in March when people are ready to say goodbye to winter, and hello to spring planting!” KASSI welcomes volunteers for seed-growing and seed-saving activities, as well as people interested in serving on the board of directors. For more information about KASSI, go to seedsgrowfood.org or email kassinitiative@gmail.com Save the date – Seedy Saturday, Saturday, March 10, 2018. Watch for details. For information about seed saving at the national and international levels: • Seeds of Diversity: www.seeds.ca • USC: www.usc-canada.org • Bauta Family Initiative on Canadian Seed Security: seedsecurity.ca Dianne Dowling, an organic dairy and beef farmer on Howe Island, is active in local food and farm organizations and is a member of the board of the Kingston Area Seed System Initiative.

Sharbot Lake Farmers Market

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As well as managing its own seed production plots, KASSI assists farmers and gardeners in growing out favourite OPEN 6 PM - 6 PM and significant vegetable and grain Thursday to Sunday varieties, in return for contributing to KASSI’s seed * ALL DAY BREAKFAST * collection. To give seed saving a physical focus, KASSI wants to have a seed centre within five years – a place to store

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Spirit of Christmas Craft & Bake Sale Selby Community Hall Saturday, November 11 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Coffee & muffins • Lunch • Christmas puddings • Baskets • Gum-drop cakes Baked goodies • Many other vendors Sponsored by Selby United Church Come and enjoy!

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The SCOOP • October / November 2017

Lennox & Addington Horticultural Society Our next meeting will be held at 7 p.m. in the Firehall at 66 Advance Avenue in Napanee on November 15. We will be making a Christmas decoration and greenery will be provided. Please bring any ribbons or other decorations you wish to add. We look forward to seeing you.

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October / November 2017 • The SCOOP

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Seeing the Forest for the Trees Susan Moore

O

ur forests and woodlots are miracle workers: big providers of clean air and water and excellent sources of habitat for wildlife. Take a breath of air and thank a woodlot owner.

On Friday, November 24, the Hastings Stewardship Council and partners host Valuing a Woodlot – the 28th Annual Trenton Woodlot Conference. Keynote speaker, Dr. Warren Mabee, is well known for his work in wood fuel/ forestry, renewable energy, and environmental policy. He is the Director of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy and a Canada Research Chair at Queen’s University. He is also an engaging speaker who enjoys connecting with people.

The Role of Woodlots Dr. Mabee’s topic is Seeing the Forest for the Trees: the Role of Woodlots in Ontario’s Environmental Strategies. He will look at how woodlots contribute to meeting some of the bigger environmental challenges we are facing. Just keeping our species alive as the climate pendulum swings is a tall order. Woodlots can certainly be an asset for any landowner. Dr. Mabee will explore

the role of woodlots in carbon sequestration, maintaining biodiversity, managing surface water and groundwater, and meeting recreational needs.

Old-Growth Hardwood Stands Steve D’Eon and Ken Elliot, Registered Professional Foresters, will present Accelerating Old-Growth Features in your Tolerant Hardwood Stand. Both are highly qualified with many years of forestry work under their belts. Steve and Ken are out in our regional forests measuring tolerant hardwood forests to quantify some old-growth features. Their goal is to compare managed, unmanaged, and old-growth stands for particular features and provide information on how to adjust your woodlot stand from managed or unmanaged to old growth. Many of last year’s attendees remarked on how interesting and useful Steve’s 2016 conference presentation was; he provided a great toolkit of suggestions for landowners to take home. Portable sawmill demonstrations and tool demonstrations will be on stage during the lunch hour. Plenty of local exhibitors, including woodworkers, will display their wares, books and services. Hint: See a great selection of books for nature-lovers!

Program. Robert Spence, RPF (Registered Professional Forester) with OMNRF (Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources & Forestry) 2. Shelterbelts and Windbreaks: Benefits. Peter Roberts, OMAFRA (Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs) 3. Woodlot Management: Selling Timber from Your Woodlot – from Tree to Mill. Dan Baker, RPF 4. Forest Health Update on Insects and Diseases in this Area. Vanessa Chambone, RPF, OMNRF The Annual Trenton Woodlot Conference has become a premier forestry event in Ontario. This is a great opportunity to seek advice from forestry professionals, talk to like-minded people, and thank a few woodlot owners. The Trenton Woodlot Conference is on Friday, November 24. Doors open at 7:30 a.m. for viewing of exhibits and artisan products. The program begins at 9:00 a.m. and finishes at 4:00 p.m. The location is the Batawa Community Centre at 81 Plant St., Batawa (north of Trenton). Admission is $35, including lunch. See – How to Register.

HOW TO REGISTER Preregister to ensure a hot lunch. Tickets may be purchased online at hastingsstewardship.ca. For more information, contact Matt at 613.391.9034 or info@hastingsstewardship.ca.

There are several choices of afternoon sessions, and the afternoon field trips are famous for interactive learning out in the woods.

The Working Family Woodlot

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Addington Agricultural Society Joseph Imre

T

he Annual Centreville Fair this past September, now in its 164th year, was a compelling reminder of the long history of agriculture in Lennox and Addington County. The smiling faces of so many happy children, the splendid livestock displayed by their proud handlers, innovative homecraft and the many gleaming tractors and agricultural equipment speak to an unbreakable link and interest between the community and its agricultural heritage. It is not hard to imagine that some of those same images and scenes would have been commonplace more than a century and a half ago when the county had its first annual exhibition. In recent years, the minute book for the Addington Agricultural Society, covering the years 1853-1867, was brought home to the Lennox and Addington County Museum and Archives from the Archives of Ontario. The minute book is a time capsule of early attempts to start agricultural societies to support and promote agriculture and rural development. The minute book also consists of detailed minutes of meeting proceedings, member and executive lists, financial statements, membership dues and criteria for prizes at competitions and fairs. The minutes even contain its fair share of tales of strong disagreements between the agricultural society and a few prizewinners who may have won in mischievous ways. The early history of

agricultural organization in the county has a storied beginning. The inaugural meeting of the Organization of the Agricultural Society for the County of Addington was held on Saturday, February 5, 1853, in Temperance House at Mill Creek (now Odessa). Benjamin Ham, Esq., was elected President; John Hitchings and Samuel Clark as Vice-Presidents; and, Douglas Hooper, Secretary. It was decided at this inaugural meeting that the first annual exhibition would be held on October 20, 1853, at Mill Creek, and that competitions would be held in a number of agricultural activities. Early membership was more than sixty members in 1853 and quickly grew to over 160 by 1867, comprising of members from an array of vocations and communities. The annual exhibition was the premier event for the Addington Agricultural Society and the community. Planning the exhibition required substantial resources and funds, primarily derived from membership fees. In 1857 for example, membership was $1 (until May 1st); $2 (until July 1st); and, $4 for latecomers who rushed to join a week before the annual exhibition. Both members and non-members alike however contributed to the fair’s success by building displays, providing dinner for the judges and ensuring suitable badges were distributed to prize winners. Prize categories included best bull, heifer, breed mare, best wooden plough, best

cheese, butter, and even top homemade socks. Members appeared to be keenly aware of agricultural and rural developments not only in the county but also across what was still Upper Canada at this time. A new publication out of Toronto called the Canada Farmer was so adamantly sought and desired by members that the Addington Agricultural Society eventually had to subsidize a copy for each member from its coffers. One of the most fascinating and engaging parts of the minute book remains its profound insight into the early history of civil society in pre-Confederation Canada. While the role of agricultural societies has changed in recent decades, the history and legacy of the Addington Agricultural Society and its peers continues to protect a lasting and durable bond to our agricultural heritage. Joseph is an Archives Volunteer at the Lennox & Addington County Museum and Archives.

Cover of the January 2, 1865 issue of The Canada Farmer. Headlines on this page include: “History of the Plough,” “The Extension of Flax Culture,” and “Why Hedges are Scarce in Canada.” Photo courtesy of the Lennox & Addington County Museum and Archives.

THE RIGHT MORTGAGE will save you time and money! Let’s think outside the traditional mortgage! How can I help you? ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ A page from the minute book for the Addington Agricultural Society, covering the years 1853-1867. Courtesy of the Lennox & Addington Museum and Archives.

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The SCOOP // October / November 2017  

The SCOOP is an independent community newsmagazine. Since 2005, we have been covering rural life in the Ontario area north of the 401 and so...