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May 2009 - The Local Scoop - A JEWEL OF A SALE

May Day ... May Day ... May Day ... May Day ... May Day ... May Day ... May Day ...
May 9, 2009 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Markham Civic Centre Atrium 101 Town Centre Blvd NW corner of Warden and Highway 7 next to the Markham Theatre
  • Free Admission
  • Native plants of every description
  • Related books
  • Posters and handouts
  • Ample Free Parking
Mathis Natvik
11:00 a.m.
Native Plants in Urban Environments from Green Roofs to Living Walls
Sheila Colla - York University
12:15 p.m.
The Plight of the Bumblebee. How You and Your Garden Can Help
Karen Boniface - Town of Markham
1:30 p.m.
Tree Strategies for a Greener Community
*** NEXT SATURDAY - MAY 9th ***
Oh joy, joy, joy! The sale - it's practically here! We hope that everyone is excited by the biggest event of the year. This is a rare chance to pick up a unique array of native plants and connect with others who have a true appreciation for native gardening.
There's plenty in store for all participants. Native plants of every description! Hundreds of related books! Free Presentations! Displays! Pick up a dropseed-gorgeous, colourful, National Wildlife Week 2009 poster titled "our home and native plants", featuring a larger-than-life Western Columbine, courtesy of the Canadian Wildlife Federation (limited quantities).
Don't forget to visit the Plant Donation Table. (The Scoop swears that we can hear all the furious digging as you pot your extra little lovelies to put up for adoption).
Please don't wait until the end of the day to pick up your plant order from the Order Table. This always gets Madame Butterfly in a flap! The plant-sitting service should be available to tend to your pre-purchased plants. If you didn't pre-order, you can still peruse the plant list online ahead of time and jot down some suggestions for purchases.
This edition of the Scoop is solely and sorrelly dedicated to all the NANPS volunteers; particularly to those who have spent the last few months working behind the scenes to organize The Event. Every article in this Scoop has some reference to The Plant Sale. We will not apologize for our shameless promotion. Cut us some slack - we gave the motion-sickness inducing, springy aster-bouncing bee a break and instead trotted out the ticker-tape May Day alert.
The Local Scoop Contest
Well, we have the lucky winners of The Local Scoop 1st Anniversary Contest. Part of the fun was in the hype to get you involved in coming out to The Plant Sale and part of it was curiosity - what would our members come up with? Some reasons were very simple; some were very involved. The real purpose was not to make up witty reasons to attend the sale. It was just another brazen attempt to lure you to The Plant Sale with the prospect of snatching a freebie. Hopefully, members did not feel intimidated. As you can see, every reason had a chance.
Thanks to all who entered - you are brave souls and definitely not a bunch of livermore tarweeds (Deinandra bacigalupii). You showed that you were up for the game. Congratulations!
The winning reasons to attend NANPS Annual Plant Sale, in no particular order (we had to lily pad it out with a couple of our own suggestions):
To support NANPS
- Ms. May (Deanna) Apple
Meeting intelligent people who cherish and study the free gifts nature gives us every day
- Bottled Gentian
I like bees
- Lauren Nurse
I like animals
- Lauren Nurse
I like birds
- Lauren Nurse
To get my dirty (sandy loam) hands on hard-to-find native plants
- Deanna The Prairie Smoker
Just to be a part of the mayhem (actually it's quite tame!!) of other native plant fanatics waiting in line before opening just to be the first to see what's in store (oh, and to pick up some useful information and tips from the many knowledgeable people who will be there)
- Ms. May (Deanna) Apple
The City cut down my native garden and I needed to replenish the stalks
- Queen D & The Bees Knees
To top up my eligible credits under the HRTC program
- Hot Taxales
To take in the atmosphere and to be in a state of complete awe at all those fab native plants under one roof, even for just one day
- Wonderful Cryptantha (Cryptantha mirabunda)
Missed a Scoop?
Visit the home of The Scoop and peruse the archives.
NANPS Member Service Health Announcement
Nature abhors a vacuum. Many NANPS members are not keen on house cleaning. Is there a connection? Is this a mere coincidence? Well, yes and no. Our investigative reporters at The Scoop have unearthed a dirty little secret. Through much digging, Scoop reporters may have identified a condition lurking deep within our Society. It's nothing to get too alarmed about, but we thought that we should keep you informed as the story develops.
At press time, we barely had time to coin a label for the condition: North American Native Plant Deficit Disorder (NANPDD). It's easier to pronounce than NANPS.
When did it first show up, what form does it take, how to identify it, treat it, and contain further exposure? Is it spreading through the population? Is there plant-human transmission?
Many questions are still unanswered but this is what we do know: it is chronic; there is no cure. It is seasonal; there are triggers. The incubation rate is variable as are the symptoms and thankfully, it is contagious and rapidly spreading through the population. Some are more vulnerable and prone to recurrences.
There is plant-human transmission. Both the member and the member's garden may be afflicted. While members aren't suffering in the classic sense, those in the non-native plant camp probably think otherwise (what do they know ... they are in complete denial).
Triggers appear to include the coming of spring or fall (flare ups particularly in the spring), Earth Day, the introduction of the HRTC (might be an anomaly), moving to a new property, and the sight of bare patches existing on a property. It culminates in the urge to go on a spending spree every year, prior to Mother's Day. Guilt complex? This year it happens to coincide with the new moon on May 9th.
Symptoms: various, but with one constant sign - an urge to buy native plants and with a predilection for acquiring certain types of plants to thrive in environments depending on species, light levels, moisture regimes, and soil type.
Conspiracy theories run the gamut here. This condition has probably always been around forever, but just mislabeled. Society has tried to cover it up by labeling it as the 7- year itch, for example. The cardinal flower has about a 7 year life span... could it be a cycle where every 7 years the urge to buy and plant cardinal plants takes effect? Mid-life crisis ... ...wasted half a lifetime and are just discovering the joys of planting natives now.
There are others afflictions, such as hair loss. Not the type due to heredity, receiving a bad haircut or correcting it later, but that which is self-inflicted, i.e., pulling one's hair out when native plants cannot be readily acquired. How about flat feet/over-pronation/fallen arches due to covering endless miles searching for native plants or standing on tippy-toes in an effort to spot those elusive native plants in garden centres? That's only the tip of the iceberg.
Treatment: there is no cure for this chronic condition, but it can be easily controlled with a very simple but effective remedy ... visiting the NANPS annual clinic for assessment and treatment. NANPS-trained technicians will guide you through the proper treatment, i.e., choosing plants for infill projects for your particular garden conditions. This year's clinic is held at the Markham Civic Centre on May 9th. Please tell your family, friends, and neighbours that they can get treatment next weekend (individual's reactions may vary). It is nothing of which to be ashamed. This is something you can not only live with but thrive with.
Lost but Found
I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose form was duly captured
In a book, the owner so enraptured,
At TBG in talk of trees,
And abandoned the book, R.C. Hosie's.
The Trees of Canada, a mighty tome;
A personal copy, far from home.
Surely missed and most desired;
A wealth of knowledge to be acquired.
Poems are made by *Fool's parsley,
But only you can solve this mystery.
*(Aethusa cynapium, an introduced species). Apologies to Joyce Kilmer ... but it would be pure poetry, if we could find the rightful owner of the book. A copy of The Trees of Canada by R.C. Hosie was abandoned at The Speakers' Series (Todd Irvine's tree talk on April 7th). Please contact NANPS to be reunited. If you are not the rightful owner, perhaps you can pick up your own copy at The Plant Sale next weekend. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of every book is given to NANPS.
Truth in Advertising?
Scotts Canada ran a full page ad touting their weed killer, Roundup, in the Toronto Star, last Saturday (April 25th). They inserted a photo of a goldenrod and labeled it as ragweed. Are we not surprised why the ragweed-goldenrod confusion still exists? NANPS will be filing a complaint with the Advertising Standards Canada (ASC) under clause 1a of The Canadian Code of Advertising Standards pertaining to inaccurate illustrations.
If the Scoop had our way, we would also file a complaint under clause 14 - unacceptable depictions and portrayals. Provisions under this clause deal with discrimination, condoning violence, public contempt, and encouraging attitudes that offend the standards of public decency prevailing among a significant segment of the population (in this case, gardeners/stewards of native species).
Hmmph! You can start a protest by rounding up several species of goldenrod at The Plant Sale and planting them in your garden. And you can round it out by rounding up any Scotts Canada products and dumping them at the nearest depot on a scheduled Environment Day - Scotts free!
On a Hope and a Prairie
(They want to pave paradise and put up a parking lot)
The Ojibway Prairie Complex is a five-park system in Windsor containing the best example of the remaining 0.5% of endangered tallgrass prairie in Canada. Ninety species of plants are at risk, of which four are endangered and three threatened, including A BLAZING STAR!
The entire complex is in jeopardy by a proposal for bloated big box development adjacent to the sites. An OMB hearing is set for July 6th.
Check out the details in the latest issue of The Blazing Star (Spring 2009). And please voice your displeasure, to elected government representatives.
Even before the economy really tanked, big box stores were deemed passé - gone the way of shop-'til-you-drop mentality and of rampant consumerism. When are developers (terroirists) going to clue in?
Note: With all due respect to the seriousness of the state of the economy, the new/recycled code of shopping; the one that deals with fiscal restraint does not apply to NANPS (North American Native Plant Sale - dual-purpose acronym). In nature, there are always exceptions.In the shopping sphere ... this is the exception. The Scoop would never ask you to exercise moderation nor to tighten your purse strings at The Plant Sale. Just don't ask us to pick up the bill.
In Passing
Norah R. Urquhart, wife and research partner of the late Professor Fred Urquhart, passed away after a brief illness. She was 90 years old. Professor Urquhart was a member of the Zoology Department at the University of Toronto from 1948 to 1977. Both Norah and Fred Urquhart were appointed to the Order of Canada in 1998 and are credited with one of the greatest natural history discoveries of our time - the discovery of the Monarch Butterfly overwintering sites in Mexico.
"Two such as you with such a master speed, cannot be parted nor be swept away, from one another once you are agreed, that life is only life forevermore, together wing to wing and oar to oar." (Robert Frost)
To support the Urquhart's legacy, food for Monarchs can be purchased at The Plant Sale. On offer are Milkweed plants for the larval youngsters and a variety of flowering plants to meet the needs of Monarchs who have reached the age of majority, i.e., adult Monarchs.
Dates on Tap
May 3
NANPSian, Lorraine Johnson, The Natural Treasures of Carolinian Canada
- free TFN lecture.
May 9
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In dedication to our NANPS Plant Sale Volunteers: "The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep". (Robert Frost)
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