The Wildflower Blog: Three favourite wildflowers to grow

Bloodroot (Photo by Thomas Noland)

Bloodroot (Photo by Thomas Noland)

Bloodroot, Dutchman's breeches and Virginia bluebells are three lovely spring-blooming wildflowers that are worthy of any flower garden, not just a wildflower garden. In my garden, its always a race between bloodroot and Dutchman's breeches for...

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It’s turtle time!

Blanding's turtle (Photo by NCC)

Blanding's turtle (Photo by NCC)

Anyone who drives the winding, hilly roads of Ontario’s Frontenac Arch is familiar with the picturesque views of forest rolling along granite ridges, lakes scattered across the landscape, diverse wetlands and the potential for wildlife...

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Keep your coffee mug covered: How LDD put a lid on my camping trip

A caterpillar crawling on my pants (Photo by Jensen Edwards/NCC staff)

A caterpillar crawling on my pants (Photo by Jensen Edwards/NCC staff)

As a west-coaster, I’ve come to relish the soothing splats of raindrops on my tent — so long as, of course, I am dry and warm inside. That sound, that damp smell that steams up from rainforest ferns, they awaken in me memories of...

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What's up with the very hungry caterpillars?

Each LDD caterpillar can eat one square metre of leaves in one season (Photo by Paul Prior, CC BY 4.0)

Each LDD caterpillar can eat one square metre of leaves in one season (Photo by Paul Prior, CC BY 4.0)

If you have young children in your life, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, by the late and celebrated children’s author Eric Carle, is probably a familiar read and has been a fan favourite since 1969. This spring and summer though, there is...

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Blanding’s turtle: A lesson about life in the slow lane

Blanding's turtle at Emma Young Property, Frontenac Arch, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Blanding's turtle at Emma Young Property, Frontenac Arch, ON (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

I think many of us need a reminder to slow down. With a ground speed maxing out at only a few kilometres per hour, the only option for a Blanding’s turtle is slow. Although it takes them a long time to travel throughout their extensive home...

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Turtles: Canada's culture in a shell

Blanding's turtle, Frontenac Arch Natural Area, Ontario (Photo by Ryan M. Bolton)

Blanding's turtle, Frontenac Arch Natural Area, Ontario (Photo by Ryan M. Bolton)

It was a gloomy day in southern Ontario. Although the canoe I paddled in was quiet, the landscape — filled with croaks and chirping — was anything but. Three metres away, a small creature emerged from the glass-like water to stretch...

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The truth about ticks

Adult deer tick (Photo by Scott Bauer/Wikimedia Commons)

Adult deer tick (Photo by Scott Bauer/Wikimedia Commons)

Ticks seem to be everywhere these days. They’re on the news, on your social media feed and maybe even on your skin. People, especially those in southern Canada, are dealing with blacklegged ticks (also called deer ticks) with increasing...

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Reflections, roundtables and royalty: Thoughts from attending the IUCN Global Youth Summit

A group photo of one session during the IUCN Youth Summit

A group photo of one session during the IUCN Youth Summit

There are not many reasons I will willingly get out of bed at 5:30 a.m., but the opportunity to make a real difference in the world is one of them. Recently, I gathered with 13,000 fellow young people from across the globe at the International...

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The wildflower blog: Harbingers of spring for Ontario

Pepper and salt (Photo by Pat Deacon, CC BY-NC 4.0)

Pepper and salt (Photo by Pat Deacon, CC BY-NC 4.0)

I am a retired forestry scientist who has wildflower gardens. My mother introduced me to wildflowers at an early age. She grew up in Pennsylvania, and her favourite wildflowers were the delightfully fragrant trailing arbutus and mountain laurel...

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Canada's splendid sparrow crew

Dark-eyed junco (Photo by Bill Hubick)

Dark-eyed junco (Photo by Bill Hubick)

Sparrows often don’t get enough credit. Many don’t have flashy plumage like jays, orioles or cardinals, or melodic songs like thrushes or meadowlarks; however, sparrow species are often fairly distinct (once you get to know them) and...

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