As a result of the City of Toronto’s aggressive and absurdly expensive clearance tactics in Trinity Bellwoods Park, the ecological landscape that once was lush and green is now dry and bleak.
For people who don’t know, there is a greenhouse near the community center, which is run by a handful of local volunteers and community members. The gardens surrounding the space served as an extension of the growing season, however, on Wednesday afternoon, a local informed the group that a bulldozer clamped away every last bit of their plants and efforts in a matter of minutes.
The group was given no warning prior to this removal, which meant all their personal property, time, energy, and love was just thrown out, along with the community’s canoe, which symbolized the Lost Rivers project that was generously donated by the David Suzuki Foundation… because “who knows what could be in there, they could have stashed or hid something” in the words of an overseeing city authority.
Beyond the loss we as gardeners feel, what about the birds and the bees, the ladybugs, snails, and butterflies, what about them? The rich diversity built up over the summers offered sweet nectar and a place of refuge for a host of insects and creatures. They enrich our landscape and remind us that we share this space with another world hidden inside beautiful patches of raspberry bushes, joe-pye weed, mint, and more that no longer exist. Without the plants that border our strolls, the colours and aromas of flowers that make us stop and stare, the sounds of birds to uplift our moods, or the butterflies to catch our eyes, our connection to nature would be lost.