A group dedicated to helping farmers in the township benefit from strategic tree planting is preparing to take its program to the next level with the hiring of a project coordinator and forestry specialist.
Trees for Mapleton steering committee chair Paul Day introduced Dallas Campbell to community partners at a recent committee meeting at the Mapleton council chambers.
Trees for Mapleton has secured funds from the Ontario Trillium Foundation to hire a full-time person to lead the program for three years.
Campbell will spend most of his time working with farmers while based at the Mapleton municipal office. He will also share resources and office facilities with forestry and tree specialists at the Grand River Conservation Authority office in Cambridge.
The Trees for Mapleton program provides technical and financial assistance to landowners so they can take advantage of the many economic and social benefits of trees on the farm. Day estimates that strategically planted windbreaks and shelterbelts, for example, can return $20,000 to $25,000 per year to the average farm in Mapleton.
One of the logistical challenges the Trees for Mapleton committee will address over the coming months is the growing demand for nursery stock suitable farms.
“We will be facing a shortage of stock in the near future as folks are coming to realize the critical value of trees,” said Day. “We are fortunate in Wellington County to have the visionary Green Legacy nursery to supply our tree demands, but this resource has limitations.”
Landowners interested in the Trees for Mapleton program should contact Dallas Campbell at 519-638-3313 or at the GRCA office – after Aug. 25 – at 519-621-2761 ext.2259.