Supported by a pro bono grant, Wilder has developed and is in the midst of deploying a comprehensive survey to understand the roles, responsibilities and insights within the Canadian tree industry so that we can participate in the creation of a viable, growing and resilient local seed market. If you'd like to take the 10 minute survey, you can access it here.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.