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NATURAL HISTORY, TORONTO REGION

 

The white pine–red pine type within the area has been practically all removed by lumbering operations and its powers of reproduction greatly reduced by repeated fires, so that its sites are now chiefly occupied by poplar (mostly Populus grandidentata) and paper birch (Betula alba var. papyrifera). The original forest occupied the thin soils covering the granites and crystalline limestones and the deeper gravelly or sandy glacial and post-glacial deposits. The ground cover of the few stands of pine that remain is usually composed of the following species in order of their abundance: Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens) ; bracken fern (Pteris aquilina) ; blueberry (Vaccinium canadense and Vaccinium pennsylvanicum) ; bunch-berry (Cornus canadensis) ; bush honeysuckle (Diervilla lonicera) ; beaked hazel-nut (Corylus rostrata) ; pipsissewa (Chimaphila urnbellata) ; partridge-berry (Mitchella repens) ; wild sarsaparilla (Aralia nudicaulis) ; trailing arbutus (Epigaea repens).

The trees of the coniferous swamp type are : Balsam (Abies balsamea) ; arbor vitae (Thuja occidentalis) ; black spruce (Picea mariana) and larch (Larix laricina). They occur in various mixtures. Any of the first three mentioned may often predominate, and more rarely the last. Among the more characteristic subordinate plants of this type may be mentioned : Mountain holly (Nemopanthus mucronata) ; winterberry (Ilex verticillata) ; chokeberry (Pyrus arbutifolia) ; cotton grass (Eriophorum vir-

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