Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas

Unido: 11.ene.2020 Última actividad: 19.jul.2024 iNaturalist Canada

Global Conservationist's Roots and Shoots FILM Legacy of Saskatoon's Secret Forest and CURRICULUM package in English and French about Richard St. Barbe Baker first global conservationist

Wildwoods of Saskatoon

Exploring the Wildwoods of Saskatoon: The Ecology of a Planted Forest in French and English

Saskatoon And Area City Nature Challenge April 26 to April 29, 2024, followed by an identification period April 30 – May 5, 2024. Results will be unveiled on Monday, May 6, 2024. It will be a time to see which city could get the most people involved, which city finds the highest diversity in types of species, and finally, which city gets the most photographs and sound recordings on iNaturalist.

Eventbrite page for BioBlitzes and workshops
YouTube Channel
Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas

Two Laboratories in Ecological Succession:

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Discover 7 hectares [17 acres] of West Swale wetlands nestled within 132 hectares [326 acres] of woodlands planted 50 years ago now a diverse, semi-wild, area to roam and enjoy. Named in honour of Richard St. Barbe Baker, silviculturist, conservationist, environmental activist & prolific author, who contributed greatly to worldwide forest protection, reforestation and desert reclamation

George Genereux Park 60 hectares [148 acres] of semi-wilderness habitat to explore and celebrate. Honouring Gold Olympic medalist Dr. George Genereux, radiologist, professor, and meticulous illustrator

So I am a member of the non profit charity group called Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. Our non-profit charity organization formed to protect, conserve and restore the ecosystems and biodiversity on a long-term basis at the two Saskatoon afforestation areas, [the 326 acre Richard St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (RSBBAA) and the 147 acre George Genereux Urban Regional Park (GGURPP)]. RSBBAA has 17 acres of marshlands as well as 143 acres of woodlands re-naturalized by tree plantings. That being said, the afforesting practices were done in a "Weaving" pattern and the existing trembling aspen bluffs were not removed, so over the last 50 years the Trembling Aspens have expanded, and nurtured native understorey species. Some of the trees which were afforested were plantings of drought resistant trees recommended by the now defunct Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration (PFRA); a balsam poplar hybrid sporting the balm of Gilead (Populus balsamifera), American Elm (Ulmus americana), Manitoba Maple (Acer negundo var. interius) - Native, Siberian Elm (Ulmus pumila), Colorado Blue Spruce (Picea Pungens), Scotch Pine or Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris), Willow (Salix spp) (Bebbs Willow identified among others out there), Manitoba Maple (Acer negundo), Green Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica), and the Siberian peashrub or caragana (Caragana arborescens). There seem to be two spruce in the afforestation areas, Colorado Blue Spruce, and White Spruce (Picea glauca)- The thought is that when choosing 12 inch high saplings that the two species got mixed.

The maples -if afforested - are not as plentiful as the other aforementioned species and Amur Maples (Acer ginnala) are only found in an area of George Genereux Urban Regional Park.

Perhaps there were buffaloberry afforested, though these are not listed on the 1972 archival list for the afforestation area as saplings chosen, that being said the PFRA did distribute buffaloberry it has been discovered. Buffaloberry is also native to this area of the province of Saskatchewan.

These two areas started as tree nurseries under the award winning Green Survival Program and were preserved in perpetuity by Saskatoon City Council. There is value in conserving natural areas and the ecosystem functions of wetlands and forested areas as City of Saskatoon and Saskatoon North Partnership for Growth (P4G) neighbourhoods develop in the south west area. Citizen science bio-blitzes help develop a baseline inventory towards estimating the natural capital asset value. Such green infrastructure provides a wide array of benefits towards climate change, to people and wildlife. Under direction from the City of Saskatoon and the Meewasin Valley Authority, citizen science bioblitzes are beneficial to learn about the ecosystem at the afforestation areas. Community volunteer bio-blitz actions on iNaturalist coordinate well with the ecological assessment and master plan being proposed for the area. We encourage everyone to learn with us virtually, via pamphlet, or with small outdoor trips to learn iNaturalist and then if you wish to continue individually as you enjoy great forest walks that would be fantastic. Please email if you are interested in learning more about how to help out! Directions are on the webpages

Because there are two distinct land areas there are two iNaturalist projects:

Baker Area Eco-Quest BA EQ for Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Genereux Park Eco-Quest GP EQ for George Genereux Urban Regional Park

The MVA and the CoS have plans to conduct a professional ecological assessment as well to develop a baseline inventory of the flora and fauna in conjunction with community groups and classrooms as citizen scientists. After this is undertaken, then rehabilitation or restoration work can begin on degraded areas by means of perhaps permaculture three sisters community gardens laying the groundwork for food forests in addition to pollinator ribbons of native flower species. The two afforestation areas are; Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (Baker Area Eco-Quest iNaturalist project) and George Genereux Urban Regional Park (Genereux Park Eco-Quest iNaturalist project).

MarkDown Language


Species of concern A listing of 62 species found in the afforestation areas, including three of high likelihood to be found.

Tree Species in the afforestation areas A listing of Tree Species in the Afforestation Areas. Did you know that Ten tree species were afforested (Planted)? Did you know that there are 40 tree species in total?

So.... If you ever around and about the south west corner of the City of Saskatoon, drop around with your iNaturalist app loaded on your phone, and help us out with a few observations here or there ;-)

Thank you.


WEBSITE domain

Directions are on the webpages to arrive at
George Genereux Urban Regional Park
Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
in the City of Saskatoon



THANK YOU for your help on iNaturalist from everyone with their identifications to verify species to "research grade", indeed. Greatly appreciated.


Attached is a short of list of helpful web information and I will keep my eyes open for other helpful web sites, books and resources to add as they come up.-Julia

Formatting text on iNaturalist pages uses "Markdown" language

Well now, there is another way of receiving help on iNaturalist. User Torgos23 has a list of helpful identifiers on iNaturalist on their profile page for various organisms! User Torgos23

User / Curator Cedric Lee also has a resource list - starts out in California, but has broad resources as well.

iNaturalist Tech Tips by Vermont Atlas' of Life Journal

This is a very valuable note about research grade! by user jgw-atx

~North American iNaturalist Guides

~Helpful journals, guides, tips from iNat users

~iNaturalist Journal of Mary Krieger

~iNaturalist Nathan Taylor "Links I Use a Lot"

-List of Online Resources by AT csledge

~iNaturalist "What to photograph" When it comes to a plant which is unknown, which plant parts should be photographed to help to create an identification "What to photograph"

~Getting Good Photos For Identification

~Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre iNaturalist Project


~Asteraceae An illustrated key to the Asteraceae of Alberta

~Biota of North America Program BONAP USDA

~Book: TITLE Plants of the Western Rangelands

-Buffaloberry - which is which? leaves and thorns

~Colin's Virtual Herbarium (based out of Regina SK)

~Facebook Plant Identification

~Facebook Saskatchewan Native Plants - Native Plant Society of Saskatchewan

~Fire Effects Information System

-Flax - Wyoming Flax or Yellow Flax Linum compactum

~Flora of North America

~Integrated Taxonomic Information System ITIS

~Invasive Species Cards features invasive plants including thistles, fish, bugs etc

~Key to the major groups and families of vascular plants in Alberta illustrated

~Lactuca in Manitoba - More Puzzles - an amazing way to tell apart the blue lettuce species of flowers

~Mallow resources

~Minnesota Wildflowers

-Name change. Stinging Nettle

-Name Change Common Blue Lettuce Name change. L. tatarica is now considered to be a Eurasian sp., not found in North America, and L. tatarica var. pulchella =the native species- has been elevated to a full species, L. pulchella.

~Native Plant Society of Saskatchewan resources

~Nature Saskatchewan Resources

~ Saskatoon Nature Society Resources

~Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre Species lists

~Saskatchewan Prairie Conservation Action Plan PCAP resources

~Sask Wildflowers

-Small Dicot Families Taxon Keys with drawings from Alberta

~Trees, insects and diseases of Canada's forests

~University of Saskatchewan Virtual Herbarium of Plants at Risk -->If a genus contains a species at risk, the taxonomic key for the genus is given

~USDA Plant Database

~Vascular plants of Canada VASCAN

~Western Wild Flowers book online

-Willows Salix ID

~Xerces Society Native Thistles Conservation Guide


~Boreal Forest

~Nature SK Book: Sedges (Carex) of Saskatchewan


-Alabama Mushroom Society Field Data Slip
~Boletes of California

-Bushcraft Ecosystem Journal not resources, but rather projects to do!

-Easy Guide to Mushroom Descriptions

-Edible and Poisonous Mushrooms of Canada = pdf

~Facebook Fungus Identification also "Tips for Mushroom Identification" when picture taking

~Facebook Mushroom Identification Group

~Facebook Saskatchewan Mycological Working Group -->These folks offer a Beginner's Mushroom ID movie if you check out their announcement page.

-Fungal Diversity Survey Field Data Slips

-genus stereum taxonomy changes note = false turkey tail

-AT ksanderson mushroom resources pdf file

~Main features for identifying a mushroom

~Mushroom Expert

Mycorrhizal fungi of aspen forests: natural occurrence and
potential applicationspotential applications

Native mycorrhizal fungi with aspen on smelter-impacted sites in the northern Rocky Mountains Occurence and potential use in reclamation

North American Cortinarius Collections

North American MycoFlora Project Field Data Slip

North American Mycological Society Educational Resources

~Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre Species lists

~The Ultimate Mushroom Resource List --->AMAZING list put together by AT Sigrid Jakob Check it Out if you want more about Fungi!!!

~ Trial field key to the BOLETES in the Pacific Northwest

~Wisconsin State Herbarium -->Mycology collections portal

~Web page Mushroom Observer is similar to Bug Guide, and one can submit their photos their for identification.


Sustainability about plants and mushrooms are a bit differernt. Plants are easier to move hither and thither, and not cause any damage at all to the plant while getting various shots under and over leaves, the stem, the full plant, under and over bloom etc.

What I understand is that the main part of the fungi is the mycelium which grows underground, so the visible mushroom is like the apple on an apple tree, and the mycellium is the tree trunk and branches. If there are more than one mushroom showing above ground, I may increase knowledge of fungi with one mushroom being picked to get a photo underneath the cap, and to see if the stem of stipe is hollow. If I take the cap home to make a spore print, I may return the spore print to the same location afterwards so that the spores can continue making fungi

People do have differing opinions - here is an iNaturalist discussion, where the folks would rather attempt to get the various photos without picking the fungi

And here is an article from the forager point of view which suggests to protect the habitat that mushrooms thrive in, to sustain the fungi.

This article about fungi is written with more consideration for nature.

The Mycelium Society mentions this etiquette

It is also good to know the legal ramifications of picking mushrooms. BC says this and Saskatchewan laws are similar " you can't harvest in provincial or national parks. For private, leased or reserve land, you must get permission." City parks are the same - not allowed. So, when I want to forage fungi for eating, I usually do it on my own property, or where I have asked permissions. Though, I only safely eat two species to date, more learning to go. ;-)

So, that was a confusing answer. So, it is up to you to determine what is ethical for you. Sometimes, I try to bring a flashlight, so my smartphone can take photos of the underside of fungi growing on the side of trees without disturbing the fungi for instance. I also try to remember a tape measure to document the change in size of the fungi throughout the season.

Fungi and plants are in different kingdoms, and the Saskatchewan Mycological Working Group (on facebook), states that not enough is known to date about what species we have in SK, which are rare and which are abundant, as we have no ecological survey of our fungi, so it could be that it is iNaturalist and citizen scientists to the rescue!

Especially citizen scientists like you, who are conscientious about your footprint in the ecosystem. That is appreciated!

Good luck with your decision.


~All you ever wanted to know about lichens
~Boreal Forest Lichens

-Common LIchens of Cypress Hills in Provincial Park Saskatchewan, Canada UofS Bernard deVries

~Discover Life | All living things | Lichens USID

~Facebook Lichen Identification and Appreciation

Getting to Know your Boreal LIchens of Saskatchewan Series II Bernard deVries


~Non Vascular Lecture Series by Moss Geek

~Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre Species lists

~USDA About Lichens

~Wisconsin State Herbarium Lichen Portal --> Lichen Portal


-@ astorey_botany has a listing of moss identifier webpages listed.

~The Mosses of Saskatchewan Part 5 from Biodiversity SK

~Mosses of the Prairies of West Central Canada by C.D. Bird.

~Nature SK Book Ferns and Fern Allies of Saskatchewan



-Bats / Bats of Alberta AT Jasn Headley Profile page with links

~Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre Species lists

~Saskatchewan Herptiles Guide on iNaturalist by SCDC

~Saskatchewan Mammals Guide on iNaturalist by SCDC

~For bones / skulls, check out the links from this page

Aves Birds :

~Ebird: by region or by hotspot

~MacCauley Library by Cornell Lab of Ornithology

~Saskatoon Nature Society Field Checklist of Saskatchewan Birds

Arthopods (Insects):

-->Acadia National Park Bumble Bee Guide

-->Arthropod Identification

-->Become Bee-sotted! Burke Mountain Naturalists

-->Bug Guide

-->Bumble Bees of Calgary

-->Bumble bees of Bandelier National Monument

-->Bumble Bees of Northwestern Ontario

-->Bumblebees of Wisconsin

-~>"Calconey" Profile - Timothy Frey Curator has amazing Gall Resources

-->Canadian Journal of Arthropod Identification

~->caterpillar resources AT k8thegr8

-->Cricket Songs! A note by AT kjudge check it out

-->Daniel McCloskey AT ddennism - Goldenrod Galls

-->Field/Photo ID for Flies

~from AT kjudge for Othoptera [grasshoppers, locusts and crickets (katydids)] For a great resource on identifying Orthoptera, including dichotomous keys, see Vickery and Kevan 1985 Insects and Arachnids of Canada, Part 14:


-->Galls with pictures. 50 types of galls on various native Manitoba plants My Manitoba Gall’ry. Version René Ammann

-->Goldenrod Galls by AT ddennism

-->Golderod Leaf Bunch Galls by AT ddennism

-->Host and Nectar Plants for Common Manitoba Butterflies

-->Identification method

-->Key to Female Bumble Bees
of Oklahoma

-->Matthias Buck resources

-->Nomolosx profile page has great resources for any kind of hoppers.

-->Recommended Gall Identification Resources for the eastern United States Getting started - great new resource from AT megachile and AT jeffdc

-->Tips for Gall Hunting and Gall Correspondences
-->Tommi Nyman - Aspen gallers -

-->Saskatoon Nature Society Checklist of Checklist of Dragonflies and Damselflies in the Saskatoon Area and Checklist Saskatoon Area Butterflies

-->Spring butterflies in Manitoba

-->The Order of Lepidoptera in the Northeastern United States & Canada By Chris Alice Kratzer, 2015

-->Visual Aid to Identifying Moths of North America found from iNat curator...mamestraconfigurata

-->Xerces Society for invertebrate conservation


AT berkshirenaturalist resources on Slugs.

My note

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