When Harry Jongerden looks around the four little acres up at Lawrence Ave. W. near Leslie St. that are the Toronto Botanical Garden — one of the smallest in North America — he sees a 35-acre future. He sees a bridge soaring over a ravine that has been rid of invasive plants, like that treacherous English ivy that used to behave itself and stay where it was planted until global warming created the conditions it needed to sprawl and grow and never die, not even in winter. He sees switchback trails and circular paths. He sees a five-acre teaching garden where city kids can learn about food plants. He sees a woodland walk, filled with trilliums and Jack-in-the-pulpit wildflowers, lilacs and endangered magnolias. “It will be the prettiest walk in Toronto,” said Jongerden, the Toronto Botanical Garden’s former executive director who now serves as its garden director. It was under Jongerden’s term as executive director that the dream of a major botanical garden — displaying beautiful plants and trees and shrubs and conducting research — was dreamed and transferred to paper and somehow pushed through city council, which agreed in April 2018 to merge the Toronto Botanical Garden and the… Read full this story
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