ALUS Bayham Hosts First Farm Tour

As one of the new Ontario communities delivering ALUS in 2013, a few new demonstration projects have been established this growing season in the municipality of Bayham. While much planning has occurred in meetings indoors, the Partnership Advisory Committee wanted to go out and see first-hand the fruits of their dedicated work.

ALUS-Bayham coordinator Kyle Mauthe (left) leads a tour stop with partnership advisory committee members John Stewart and Wayne Casier. This is a reforestation project with a diverse mix of native trees that were planted this spring.
The second stop on the tour was at the M & R Orchards, west of Tillsonburg. In addition to wetland enhancement projects, several large strips of tall grass prairie have been planned throughout the orchard to improve pollination services from native bees and to increase the orchard’s biodiversity. This complementary approach makes sense for both the producer and nature. While this project doesn’t look too impressive this fall, we expect the tall grass prairie to flourish on this site in coming years. Part of these projects is education of (and patience for) the long term nature of establishing native prairie projects.
A third stop on the tour was on the George Sivyer farm where a 10 metre buffer was reforested this spring with a mix of white pine, black oak, red oak and American witch hazel. This mixture are well adapted to the light sandy soils of this area.
Ron Toonders, Switchgrass for Grassroots Resilience

Ron Toonders, Switchgrass for Grassroots Resilience

Farmers like Ron Toonders are building resilient practices that benefit nature and the agricultural landscape in Ontario   This photo depicts the root system of switchgrass, Panicum virgatum. (Grown at The Land Institute in Salina, Kansas) In the hot summer months,...