By: CVC’s Kimberley Holt

What do we (CVC) have in common with Michael’s Hair Body Mind, Forests Ontario and Sustainable Forestry Initiative? Together we hope to earn a spot in the Guinness World Records.

On May 20, with the help of volunteers, we’ll attempt to break a world record during a community tree planting at Rattray Marsh Conservation Area. The event is part of a North American attempt to plant a record-breaking number of trees.

This official Guinness World Record attempt is for most trees planted in one hour, simultaneously, in different locations by a group of 25 to 100 people. So far, approximately 40 North American teams have registered.

Rattray Marsh is an ideal location to help break the record. Last year’s ice storm downed hundreds of trees and the emerald ash borer (EAB) infestation devastated most of the conservation area’s ash trees, which has reduced canopy cover and wildlife habitat. This tree planting event is one of many helping to restore the health of this treasured natural area.

Ash tree removal has allowed us to diversify the marsh’s native tree species. Sugar maple, red oak, white oak and black cherry are just some of the tree species that will be planted at the event. These species are deciduous, which mean the leaves fall off during autumn and then blossom in spring. Their large lush leaves are ideal for protecting grasses, shrubs and animals from overexposure to the sun. Canopy cover allows soil to retain moisture and nourish the roots of trees and plants.

Here’s a complete list of all the tree species we have planted at Rattray Marsh so far:

    Sugar maple
    Red oak
    Black cherry
    Choke cherry
    Silver maple
    White birch
    Trembling aspen
    Pussy willow
    White pine
    White cedar
    Round leaved dogwood
    Leaved dogwood
    Smooth serviceberry
    White oak
    Red osier dogwood

One hard day’s work of tree planting impacts our environment for years to come. Within hours, a bare landscape can be transformed into a natural sanctuary. Since 1954, we have planted over six million trees with the support of community volunteers. Claiming this record will surely make everyone green with envy.

Visit for information and to register for the Guinness World Record event.

Our tree planting events continue to sprout across the watershed. If you can’t make the Guinness World Record event, check out our events page for all of our upcoming tree plantings.

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