What’s blossoming in your neighbourhood? Not Far From The Tree develops Blossom Watch

NFFTT Blossoms

Photo from Not Far From The Tree 

There is something in the air. This wonderfully sweet scent belongs to the trees that bloom in many Canadian cities at this time of year, but it disappears quickly, and that is why our project Not Far From The Tree has created a way to enjoy the blossoms while they last – an interactive, crowd-sourced, Blossom Watch Map.

The goal of the mapping project is to captivate the beauty of the Spring while helping urbanites reap the psychological benefits of being outdoors, looking at beautiful blossoms, and sharing and connecting with fellow Torontonians.

The online interactive Blossom Watch Map features exploring and uploading functionalities. This means that Torontonians can upload their own blossom pics and view ones that others have uploaded onto the map.

Anyone can join the Blossom Watch conversation on Twitter and Instagram by tagging photos with #blossomwatchTO, or on Facebook with @Not Far From The Tree in your posts.

Besides the fluffy pink joy of it all, perhaps the most appealing part of blossom season in the city is the promise of the coming fruit season! And Not Far From The Tree volunteers will be ready to glean as much of the urban bounty as possible one again. Learn more about Not Far From the Tree here.

Community stories share local food successes in northern Manitoba

928 kilometres north of Winnipeg, Manitoba lies Barren Lands First Nation and Brochet. Facing high food costs, the community of just over 600 people expanded on an already existing interest in gardening by building a 14 x 20-foot greenhouse in 2013 in coordination with their local health centre and the Northern Manitoba Food, Culture, and Community Collaborative (NMFCCC). This is only one of many inspiring examples from the NMFCCC 2016 Community Stories booklet, which shares learnings from 18 communities.

Why freshwater matters: Our Living Waters and MEC

Our Living Waters (OLW) is a national water network that recognizes that achieving freshwater conservation requires the organization and alignment of diverse groups addressing freshwater issues. Outdoor retailer MEC is one organization deeply involved with OLW. We interviewed Meriko Kubota, MEC’s Director, Strategic Partnerships and Community Investment, to find out why freshwater is important in Canada and to MEC and its members.