Citizens Environment Alliance
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Habitat/Green Space Protection

  Humbug Marsh Marshfield Woods Ojibway Shoreline Spring Garden Process Protecting Essex County Community Garden

Habitat Cleanup

Since its inception in 1985, the CEA has challenged governments and private land owners to maintain the few green spaces left in our region. Our mandate to restore, maintain and enhance our local environment is a never-ending struggle to balance the needs of our local environment with the needs of the citizenry. Success stories which include Humbug Marsh and the Spring Garden Complex are balanced by on-going challenges with Marshfield Woods and the Ojibway Shoreline, the last remaining natural shoreline in the City of Windsor. The CEA is steadfast in its determination to conserve what few natural areas we have left and enhance existing natural areas.

Humbug Marsh

Threatened with development in 1999, the CEA along with many other concerned groups rallied to maintain the marsh as a wetland. Humbug Marsh was the last remaining wetland along the U.S. side of the Detroit River. Not only was the marsh eventually saved from development, but it became a U.S. government protected wildlife refuge in 2004.

Marshfield Woods

Being 300 acres in size, Marshfield Woods is one of the few remaining places that offer interior forest habitat. This unique habitat creates conditions suitable for wildflowers and songbirds; some of which are endangered. Marshfield Woods contains 41 different species of trees and shrubs. It is home to many animals, and has 14 different species of plants classified as provincially rare. It has also been threatend by commercial development.

The biggest threat to Marshfield Woods was a planned golf course development proposed by the Hearn Group starting in 1998. The CEA formed a coalition with other groups such as The Friends of Marshfield Woods, Little River Enhancement Group and the Essex County Field Naturalists' Club to fight to maintain Marshfield Woods as an Environmentally Significant Area and Provincially Significant Wetland.

The CEA Requests Marshfield File from ERCA

Environmental Groups unite to save Marshfield Woods

Ojibway Shores

Ojibway Shoreline

Citizens Show Overwhelming Support for Ojibway Shores

With over 13.5 hectares of woodlot, a marshy pond and 500 metres of natural Detroit River shoreline, Ojibway Shores is a ecological gem in an otherwise heavily developed Detroit River watershed. In its current state, Ojibway Shores acts as a wildlife linkage or corridor between the Detroit River and the interior significant sites of the Ojibway complex including Black Oak Woods, Ojibway Park, Ojibway Prairie, and Spring Garden ANSI.

Ojibway Shores is owned by the Federal Government of Canada and is administered by the Windsor Port Authority. On July 3rd, 2012 at Mackenzie Hall in Windsor, the Windsor Port Authority held a public meeting to reveal its plan to destroy the property known as Ojibway Shores.

Overflowing crowd attends Port Authority's explanation for destroying Ojibway Shores
An overflowing capacity audience showed up to show their support for this very important ecological link. Congratulations to everyone who attended in support of Ojibway Shores! Let's hope this support does not go unheeded by the Port Authority. View map of Ojibway Shores.

Update on Ojibway Shores

Read the ENGO Prospectus

A “real green link” for Windsor

Citizens Environment Alliance will Demand Protection for Ojibway Shores at Windsor Port Authority Annual Meeting - Thursday, June 6, 2002

The Future of Ojibway Shores

Ojibway Shores - Black Oak Woods - Brighton Beach: Exploring Options For Community Action

CEA demands cleanup at Ojibway Shores

Harbour Commission Project Will Destroy Ojibway Shoreline Habitat

Activists Fight to Save Shoreline

Spring Garden Complex

The area of discussion is a mixture of residences, commercial, institutional sites, and utilities. This sizeable, varied area is south of E.C.'Row Expressway, east of Malden Road, and west of Huron Church Road. The site borders the town of LaSalle, and the Grand Marais Drain flows through a significant portion of this area. Somewhat surprisingly, within the centre of this varied, growing 700 acre area, lies a natural area of approximately 300 acres. This area is a mix of wetlands, woodlands, and prairie habitat. Despite the intense development that has occurred around it in he past 20 years, this natural gem has retained its biodiversity and functions as a relatively vibrant natural community. This has come to be known as the Spring Garden Complex.

Protecting Essex County

Former Dump Site an Island of Green in Detroit River

City of Windsor Must Improve its Effort to Protect Natural Areas

City of Windsor Must Improve its Effort to Protect Natural Areas

CEA Joins Ontario Smart Growth Network

St. Clair College Environmentally Significant Area threatened by development

Community Garden

The CEA garden plot was first created about 10 years ago by the Fed UP gardening collective. Those early efforts continue to bear fruit and the CEA believes it is important to show citizens how easy gardening can show positive results on so many levels without the use of pesticides or fertilizers. One visible sign of not using chemicals is the level of bees and other pollinators found in the plot.

Rich, well-drained soil is the foundation or "bones" for any productive garden. The garden depends largely of the use of good compost, primarily from mushroom compost waste which makes the soil nutrient rich, well drained, yet able to hold moisture and create an environment where plants grow well. Where possible, seeds from previous years are used such as with the sunflowers, kale, tomatillos, borage, and other herbs. Seed saving is the best way to encourage seed diversity and keep seed security in public hands given concerns over GMOs and monoculture. The garden also uses strategies of companion planting and rotation to hinder pests. Herbs and hot peppers make excellent border plants to protect more vulnerable plants.

The CEA garden, though small in size, produces a significant harvest over the growing season. Plans for expanding the growing season and to also propagate native species are in the works. We hope our efforts and positive results will help encourage your own gardening.