Ontario tree nursery to destroy millions of trees due to provincial cutbacks

By the Canadian Press, Ottawa Citizen, May 6, 2019

TORONTO — One of the main nurseries for an Ontario tree planting program that’s being scrapped by the province said it will likely have to destroy about three million trees because of the cancellation.

Ed Patchell, CEO of Ferguson Tree Nursery in Kemptville, Ont., said he can’t afford to pay for staff, supplies and operating expenses to run the nursery and maintain all the trees that are in various stages of growth.

“If we don’t have a potential client to buy those trees, then I can’t afford to keep putting money into it,” Patchell said.

“It’s cheaper to destroy them at a young age than it is at the ship age, plus I don’t have to keep carrying the costs. It’s not something that we want to do, it’s something that we’re going to be forced to do because we can’t financially carry it.”

Last month the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry announced it would cancel the 50 Million Tree Program, which has seen the planting of more than 27 million trees across Ontario since 2008.


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