Archive for June, 2012

Daily Adopt-A-Tree Journal

Adopt-A-Tree Journal

Ed Horner

I’m an early riser and taking 45 minutes a day to look after a couple of newly planted trees in our park, two or three times a week,  is no burden in any way.  Typically I’ll fill my two 5 gallon water jugs, put them in the back of the car, take my Garden Claw and small garden spade, work gloves and a garbage bag and drive around the corner to Dieppe.  I turn the mulch, re-form it back into a donought shape, pull any weeds, and pour in the five gallons of water.  Ten minutes tops.  I then walk around the immediate area and pick up any trash people have left behind and deposit the bag in the litter containers provided by the City.  From leaving the house, filling the water jugs, doing the work and back home for a second coffee, 30 minutes – maybe 45 if I do 3 trees.  Below is a daily journal, updated as often as I think about it.  – Ed Continue reading


Illegal Dumping

Cleanliness of city parks is a direct responsibility of the City.  It’s a tough job in a big city and the the sanitation department can use your help.

Selfish, thoughtless citizens and organizations throw tons of garbage, illegally, into parks, ravines and green spaces every day – into areas where dogs run, children play and adults go for a bit of peace and quiet – severely detracting from public enjoyment of the park.  It’s a health and safety hazard.  The Friends of Dieppe Park believe it’s a basic right to be free of the effects of illegal dumping.

When illegal dumping occurs and is reported by calling the non-emergency number 311, the City is obligated to respond.  It’s been my experience that the response time is usually “reasonable.”  Friends of Dieppe Park believe that citizens have a civic duty to phone in a complaint or observation of illegal dumping for the health and safety of all citizens.

When that call is made – yes, you can call without giving your name – the City is now aware of the problem and is obligated to take action.  Moreover, the incident is tracked and becomes part of an ongoing record of problem areas and resources can be better channeled to deal with ongoing illegal dumping.

After a call to 311, you can also call the office of your local councilor and make them aware of the situation for their own records and possible future action.  If you don’t know the name and number of your councilor, you can ask during your 311 call.

When you call about illegal dumping, it’s very helpful if you can describe or list the type of material dumped.  For example, if it’s a refrigerator, stove or car, that would require different pickup equipment and personnel than say a few bags of household rubbish.  Often, the operator will give you a confirmation or case number that you can use to track and follow up on the report.  Be persistent and call back if no action is taken within a reasonable time.

If you observe an act of illegal dumping FODP suggests that you:

  •  Ensure your own safety, and those you are responsible for, first and foremost
  • Note time, date and place
  • Observe the vehicle
  • Do not make your presence known
  • Do not touch the material dumped
  • Report the vehicle, not the individual
  • Record license plate number, vehicle description
  • Call the non-emergency number 311

You can also report overflowing public garbage cans, which can be just as much as a health hazard, using the 311 number.

As a matter of public safety, you may also want to report standing water in parks and green areas.  This is important from April to August as this is prime mosquito breeding time and concerns about West Nile Virus, while often overblown, are not without basis.  The Toronto Public Health (TPH) and Municipal Licensing and Standards (MLS) have developed a joint West Nile Virus response protocol and are obliged to act.

For a complete listing of services offered through the 311 number, go to the City of Toronto Website.

Contacting 311

  • Phone within Toronto city limits: 311
  • Phone outside city limits: 416-392-CITY (2489)
    (can be used within Toronto if you can’t reach 311)
  • TTY customers: 416-338-0TTY (0889)
  • Fax: 416-338-0685
  • E-mail:

 – Article courtesy of Ed Horner, Feb 2012 – FODP

Declaration of Interdependence

The Declaration of Interdependence expresses [the David Suzuki Foundation’s] values as an organization. It was written for the 1992 UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, where portions of [their] declaration were woven into the work of others around the world to form the Earth Charter.

Since then, the Declaration has inspired people around the world to live lighter on the Earth Continue reading

Sizing up Rob Ford’s land grab

Parks head Richard Ubbens says it wasn’t his idea to lease parkland to the mayor. So who at City Hall came up with it? Photo by Enzo di Matteo

If you ever thought parkland in and around Toronto was in some way “protected” or “sacrosanct” you are about to be taught a lesson – Rob Ford style.
This is a fascinating read into how things go down at City Hall when nobody is looking.
Sizing up Rob Ford’s land grab
By Enzo Di Matteo Continue reading

Dieppe Park Field House and Facility Improvements

Dear Councilor Fragedakis;

On behalf of Friends of Dieppe Park, I just wanted to add a few things or make minor changes on the written comments I left at the artificial ice rink (A.I.R.) presentation on Thursday evening. There’s a lot of stuff here and a few of them may require a little more discussion, but it’s a start. Continue reading

Upgrade to A.I.R. and facilities in the works for Dieppe Park

The Artificial Ice Rink (AIR) and related facilities at Dieppe Park have fallen on hard times.  Built in 1974, the facility is now close to 40 years old and it’s showing.  The City, lead by the spirited Ward 29 Councilor Mary Fragedakis was out last night at the old facility, charts and drawings in hand, so offer us a new vision of what the AIR could be.  Continue reading

Centre for Green Cities takes PUG Awards

Last night I made it to the PUG Awards.  It’s an annual People Choice Award for Toronto architecture, completed in the previous year.  This year the Commercial Space winner was The Centre for Green Cities, Evergreen Brick Works.  Kudos to them and their team!  This is a beautiful building, constructed to high environmental standards, sensitive to the semi-natural and historic area in which it’s sited, uses lots of natural light and lots of recycled and reused materials.  Interesting to note that the awards were swept by Diamon Schmitt Architects.  They’ve been doing some great work in and around TO. Continue reading