Bondi Resort Blog

Come on into our Blog for a look at the wonderful world we've got to share! With over 240 hectares (600 acres) of wilderness woodlands surrounding the resort, just ten minutes from Algonquin Park, we feature over 400 metres (1200’) of waterfront and beach; boat rentals; summer hiking trails winding through fields and woods; 20 km. of groomed cross country ski trails and snowshoeing in winter; access to nearby snowmobile trails for sledders, and a toboggan hill for the young at heart.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

In praise of Native Species

Shorelines are such a critical -- and delicate -- part of the environment.

This 'ribbon of life' plays an enormous part in providing bird and wildlife habitat. It's also one of the first places that humans make an impact on the landscape. Preserving the shorelines is the first, best practice, but hot on its heels is the restoration of shorelines that have lost their vegetation. To help, the Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation every year offers people the opportunity to purchase native species of plants. Plants such as Meadow Sweet, Button Bush, Blue Vervain and Brown-eyed Susan. Using native species helps to restore the balance, and ensures that we don't introduce damaging plants into the environment. We need look no farther than Purple Loosestrife, or phragmytes for examples of out-of-control and destructively invasive plants. Phragmytes, also known as Japanese Knotweed, is so destructively invasive that it can grow through asphalt, and soon displaces native species. This bamboo-like plant can grow 3 metres tall, in dense thickets that wildlife can't penetrate. It does well in its native Asian countries, but it is a disaster over here.

Sticking with Native species is the very best way to avoid introducing such invaders.

It's not enough that the plants we're adding along our shorelines and around our Muskoka properties are native species, they need to be nursery grown. Taking plants from the wild diminishes the environment, and those plants rarely survive in their new locations.

Keep in mind that the landscaping of your property plays a crucial role in protecting water quality. Hard summer rain that runs off of lawns and into the lake, carrying soil and any pollutants with it, can be absorbed and filtered by plants and shrubs. These native varieties have deep roots, making them both hardier and better at preventing soil erosion. Native plants and shrubs provide habitat and food for native animals and insects and contribute to the natural bio-diversity of our ecology.

To help, the Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation holds an annual Native Plant and Wildflower Sale. It's not a fundraiser, simply a way to encourage the planting of native species. Plant orders must be received by fax, mail or email by April 4, for pick up at Baysville or Dwight locations on May 16th.

This year's offerings include Nannyberry, Red Osier Dogwood, Highbush Cranberry, Sweet Gale, Brown-eyed susans, forget-me-nots, wild bergamot and foxglove beardtongue.

For more information and photos, visit

To order plants, and champion the Muskoka environment, you can contact
And while you're at it, why not join the Foundation? They do amazing work, and have preserved several large tracts of the Lake of Bays for future generations as well as ourselves. You'd go a long way looking for a better way to help preserve the beauty of this place.

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