800 Juliana Drive, Woodstock, Ontario

Phone: 519-539-1492


Tree Planting

Tree Planting at Hodge's Pond
Last Friday, students and teachers from our seventh, sixth, and fourth grade classes put on their overalls, boots, warm
winter coats, toques and gloves and boarded the bus for some community earthkeeping work at Hodge's Pond, south of
Woodstock. Our bus driver, Gerry Huinink, remembers decades ago when Hodge's Pond was the site of summer
camps and outdoor recreation for families. In recent years, the former mill pond became warm and stagnant, so the
dam has been dismantled and the natural flow of Cedar Creek and accompanying wetlands restored. A partnership
between Ducks Unlimited, Oxford County, Stewardship Oxford, the Upper Thames River Conservation Authority
(UTRCA) and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry has been established in order to re-naturalize this site.
WCS students have worked with the UTRCA frequently in the past eight years planting trees and shrubs throughout
the county. The latest phase at Hodge's Pond includes plans to plant 1200 native trees and shrubs. WCS students were
the first of many groups of local students who will work to expand the natural habitats for wildlife in this area. Our
Grade 7 group planted 120 deciduous trees and bushes, while the grades 4 and 6 group planted about 130 trees,
including maple, tamarack and others. Students were industrious, efficient, and enjoyed being given specific
instructions and tools to do the planting work. Students returned to school chilly, dirty, but pleased with having had the
opportunity to work outdoors, and to provide new habitats for wetlands wildlife such as herons, turtles, snakes, and
birds. Future plans for Hodge's Pond include opening the area for public use as a natural space for hiking and enjoying
wildlife. We are thankful for this opportunity to work with community partners to be keepers and restorers of creation.
C. Verbeek, Principal

Login to post comments.