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Wilder is mitigating climate risk

by producing solutions centered in nature.

A small seedling of a tree just beginning to sprout.

Our goal is to improve biodiversity, build community and enhance resiliency.

A forest with fog rolling in over top of the trees.

About Us

Simply put, we speak for the trees. Our team of dedicated experts works on behalf of nature to champion the biodiversity that it so importantly supports.

Wilder imagines and delivers nature-based solutions anchored in science and focused on driving big results.
We bring together powerful players, cutting-edge science and the might of the natural world to expedite global reforestation and deliver climate-saving interventions.

Work

Sizing Canada’s National Seed Supply
Sizing Canada’s National Seed Supply

Supported by a pro bono grant from Accenture and in partnership with Natural Resources Canada and the National Tree Seed Center, Wilder is supporting the distribution and analysis of a critical survey to help understand Canada’s domestic production supply chain to deliver nature-based solutions. The insights gained from this survey will help NTSC understand the current roles, responsibilities and realities of seed procurement in Canada and work with collaborators to develop solutions.  

Your voice matters, so please take and share the survey.  

Custom Tree Growing Program: Manulife
Custom Tree Growing Program: Manulife

On the front lawn of Manulife's iconic Bloor Street building in downtown Toronto, stands a massive old American Elm. Records show the tree has stood in this location for at least 125 years. As a part of the company's ESG programs, Wilder was brought in to complete a custom growing program to grow trees from the seeds of this specific tree. The trees will be distributed to staff in spring of 2022.

Wilder Native Tree Stock Available for Purchase
Wilder Native Tree Stock Available for Purchase

During the 2020 and 2021 seasons, Wilder collected thousands of seeds from some of Toronto's oldest and most storied trees. Every seed can be traced back to the mother tree and has been grown in partnership with the expert propagation team at NVK Nurseries in Dundas, Ontario.

We have grown these trees from specific ecological elders selected for their size, architecture and general health. We expect that they carry strong genetic material which will poise them for success in a changing climate.

We're excited to announce that our first two seasons of stock are now available for purchase and are hopeful that these trees will become part of meaningful restoration and afforestation projects in Ontario.

To view available inventory, please visit us here.

Tree Planting Project: Highway of Heroes
Tree Planting Project: Highway of Heroes

In 2007, the MTO announced that a section of the 401 would bear the additional name Highway of Heroes in honour of Canadian soldiers who have died in war. In 2020 during the first wave of the pandemic, Wilder collected seeds from select old growth oaks across the GTA and then grew these these native, source-identified seeds with a greenhouse partner and planted into section of the Highway of Heroes. We are proud that these oaks have been made a part of this beautiful and functional memorial project and look forward to watching them grow.

Native Tree Mini-Nurseries
Native Tree Mini-Nurseries

Wilder has been using data from old growth tree maps to collect and grow local seeds. We have successfully started a series of native tree nurseries, that serve to beautify urban spaces, provide valuable education and drive climate resiliency. Native Tree Mini-Nurseries are small, high efficiency nurseries for growing native trees. So far Wilder has installed mini-nurseries at TAS' 2 Tecumseth Street development (in partnership with The Bowery Project), and at a series of private residences as well as private and public schools.  In leveraging these public and private locations we have managed to successfully grow thousands of Toronto’s indigenous trees and get them back out into the community, engaging hundreds of community members in the conservation and rewilding effort. Many of these trees are now available for sale by Wilder.

Guided Urban Ecology Walks
Guided Urban Ecology Walks

In an effort to educate and develop a newfound respect for Toronto's wild spaces, Wilder guides private and corporate walks through Toronto's wild places. Connect with us here to find out how to book a walk.

Leadership

Jason van Bruggen
President and Chief Experience Officer
jason.vanbruggen@wilderventures.coJason van Bruggen

Jason van Bruggen is a Canadian photographer, filmmaker, activist and marketer based in Toronto. His immersive storytelling expresses an ambition to share authentic and truthful stories with the world. His deep connection to wilderness and wild-ness is expressed throughout his work. His affinity for trees was nurtured by spending the summers of his youth planting over a million trees, running tree planting contracts in northern Canada, and leading canoe trips to the wildest places in the country.

In addition to numerous international editorial publications and commercial credits, his work as a visual artist has been profiled by National Geographic, Outside Magazine and shown in galleries and cultural institutions around the world. His film work has aired on networks around the world including BBC, PBS, CBS, CBC, and SRF1.

Jason holds a Masters Degree in History from Queen’s University and is a citizen of Canada and the Netherlands. He has traveled and worked in over 100 countries, including some of the most remote and austere locations on the planet. He is a Fellow International of the Explorers Club and a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographic Society. He is a multi-year featured artist at CONTACT Photography Festival and a TEDx 2021 speaker.

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Blaine Pearson
Chief Executive Officer
blaine.pearson@wilderventures.coBlaine Pearson

For the last two decades, Blaine has worked at the intersection of business, innovation, and creativity. In successive positions at DDB, Ogilvy and TAXI, Blaine led projects for clients including Destination Canada, IBM and Johnson & Johnson before opening her own agency Dot Dot Dash. As leader of the creative agency focussed on 'giving agency to good', she has been responsible for developing marketing, creative and advocacy campaigns for clients like Patagonia, Greenpeace, and Oceana.

An optimistic nature enthusiast with an entrepreneur's heart, Blaine is also co-founder of several media companies, is actively involved in advising a suite of start-ups and is Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of The Friends of Allan Gardens.

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Advisory

Janet Rosenberg

For nearly 40 years, Janet Rosenberg & Studio (JRS) have created beautiful landscapes and intelligent urban and natural spaces that have significantly advanced the landscape architecture profession in Canada. The firm’s work has consistently demonstrated a creative and innovative approach to design, a strong commitment to sustainability and a sophisticated cross-disciplinary approach to large urban projects. Janet’s designs tell a narrative about the land, deeply informed by each site's natural and cultural history.  Her influence extends well beyond her award-winning projects and the large body of work created by JRS.  She is equally well-known and widely respected as a passionate advocate for the critical role of landscape architecture in the public realm.  Janet believes that the challenges posed by climate change are the defining issues of our generation, and as the founding principal of Janet Rosenberg & Studio, her work remains deeply concerned with interpreting the effects of climate change on local environments and pro-actively planning for anticipated environmental change through design innovation and interdisciplinary collaboration.

Wayne Hinton

For over 30 years Wayne has been a thought leader in the Nursery Industry.  A serial entrepreneur, Wayne Hinton met Dr. Whitcomb more than twenty-five years ago while operating a nursery in Tennessee.  With the Whitcomb patented technology, Wayne decided to create a company to change the way plants are grown.  The two forged a partnership that led to the creation of RootMaker®. Wayne spends as much time consulting growers on best nursery practices as he does on managing a fast-growing business.   Rootmaker has grown steadily to serve a constantly expanding customer roster. Through catalogues, trade show appearances and digital marketing, the company sells more than 100 products ranging from plant containers to propagation products. The company also administers the RootMaker® Certified Grower's program, which certifies plants grown at commercial nurseries and tree farms using the RootMaker® Root Branching System.

Besides growing superior plants, Wayne has a goal to create a more sustainable ecology by deploying the concept of landscape scale reforestation.  His goal is to become a disruptive force to dramatically improve our environment. His mission is to restore the Earth’s essential forest and wetland ecosystems. He envisions the Earth in balance — its original vitality and natural abundance available to all, for generations to come.

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Partners + Clients

"At Manulife Investment Management, we work to support nature and biodiversity within the cities we operate. We recognize the importance a strong urban tree canopy can have in creating a sustainable and flourishing environment. Our partnership with Wilder Climate Solutions is a step for us on our journey for a greener planet."
Regan Smith
Managing Director, Real Estate Sustainability Manulife