Tuesday, August 30, 2005


Along the lower Don are planted a number of trees called Crack Willow (Salix fragilis). This species is not native to Canada but is introduced from England. They produce a dappled shade which I suppose is aesthetically pleasing to some. Fortunately they are not invasive. They are a common park tree and you will find dozens in places like the Toronto Islands.

It gets its name from the sound when its twigs break off which creates an audible pop. In its native range the tree is supposed to have a lifespan of up to 100 years but in Toronto they have an annoying habit of falling over after only about 50 years.

The one depicted here is on the lower Don trail just north of Queen St. East. It didn't fall during the storm two weeks ago but was likely weakened by it. Nevertheless it is the city's forestry department who needs to come by and clean up the mess. Until then trail users will need to pick their way through the limbs.

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