A December Walk at Downsview Park: 2021

As a thirteen year old, I was fortunate enough to become a member of the Royal Canadian Air Force Auxiliary Band. For the next several years, I travelled regularly to the Downsview Air Force base by bus and street car from my home in Scarborough and learned so much from these experienced adult musicians. In summer we played concerts and marched in parades all over the area. Here is a photo from a concert at the CNE Bandshell. That is the Queen in the background.

The military base is now long gone and much of the area is now parkland. Here is how some of it looked on a December morning.

Some botany:

Mullein (Verbascum thapsis)
Hawthorn (Crataegus)
White Spruce (Picea glauca)
Silver Maple (Acer sachharinum)
White Cedar (Thuja occidentalis)
Heath Aster (Symphyotrichum ericoides)
Staghorn Sumac (Rhus typhina)
Ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius)
Staghorn Sumac (Rhus typhina)
Trembling Aspen (Populus tremuloides)
Trembling Aspen (Populus tremuloides)
Red Ash (Fraxinus pensylvanica)
White Spruce (Picea glauca)
White Ash (Fraxinus americana)
Red Ash (Fraxinus pensylvanica)
Staghorn Sumac (Rhus typhina)
Evening Primrose (Oenothera)
juvenile European Birch (Betula pendula)
English Oak (Quercus robur)
Black Walnut (Juglans nigra)
Cat-tail (Typha)
Black Walnut (Juglans nigra)
Phragmites (Phragmites australis)
Silver Maple (Acer sachharinum)
Swamp White Oak (Quercus bicolor)
Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia
Linden (Tilia cordata)
Linden (Tilia cordata)

NATURE POETRY

Clouded with snow
The cold winds blow,
And shrill on leafless bough
The robin with its burning breast
Alone sings now.                                  – Walter John de La Mare (1873–1956) 

Miles Hearn

2 thoughts on “A December Walk at Downsview Park: 2021

  1. Joyce Sparks

    Miles….how many miles have you put on your car this year keeping us informed of nature? It’s been wonderful and a good way to keep interested during the pandemic. I send a heartfelt thank you and wish you a happy holiday season and many more experiences with nature.

    Best wishes

    Reply
  2. Susan R.

    Thank you Miles – these pictures are wonderful and I have not been there as yet. Are the trees naturalized or has there been quite a bit of new planting? Just curious. IT will be quite wonderful when more plants grown into the open spaces. I really liked your recent post of the very tame blue jays – so many shots that I saw details I had never noticed before – really a beautiful bird which we tend to take for granted.

    Reply

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