Messages posted to thread:

From:Date:Zone:
israel24-Mar-02 06:08 PM EST 5a   
Carol24-Mar-02 07:01 PM EST 4   
israel24-Mar-02 07:17 PM EST 5a   
Carol24-Mar-02 07:47 PM EST 4a   
Susan24-Mar-02 08:44 PM EST 6a   
israel25-Mar-02 10:59 PM EST 5a   
bruce27-Mar-02 10:33 AM EST 3   
George Griffin27-Mar-02 03:40 PM EST 5a   
Dave Sallis07-Apr-02 12:48 PM EST   
Rachel07-Apr-02 03:34 PM EST 6b   
israel07-Apr-02 03:57 PM EST 5a   
sgbotsford@yahoo.com11-Apr-02 06:55 PM EST 3   
israel11-Apr-02 09:03 PM EST 5a   
JoanneS12-Apr-02 02:25 PM EST 3a   
israel12-Apr-02 03:52 PM EST 5a   
JoanneS15-Apr-02 02:53 PM EST 3a   
Glen16-Apr-02 01:27 AM EST 3   
israel16-Apr-02 10:07 AM EST 5a   
16-Apr-02 02:14 PM EST   
Carol18-Apr-02 01:19 AM EST 5a   
Glen18-Apr-02 03:25 AM EST   
israel18-Apr-02 09:51 AM EST 5a   
Nancy18-Apr-02 06:20 PM EST 5   
Rachel19-Apr-02 03:43 PM EST 6b   
Carol20-Apr-02 07:26 PM EST 5a   
israel20-Apr-02 08:27 PM EST 5a   
JoanneS22-Apr-02 01:51 PM EST   
Sherwood Botsford09-May-02 12:09 PM EST 3   
09-May-02 01:03 PM EST   
Glen 10-May-02 12:40 AM EST   
Dawn10-May-02 01:21 AM EST 3   
Nancy15-May-02 05:17 PM EST 5   
Call me TGC: Third Generation Collector15-May-02 10:39 PM EST 6a   
israel15-May-02 11:14 PM EST 5a   


Subject: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel
Zone: 5a
Date: 24-Mar-02 06:08 PM EST

Hi I live in Toronto, I want to ask say if i go out to the woods or creeks, and i see some moss or rocks or other wild plants is it against the law to take them home(even if just a very small portion of them), or can i collect seeds from wild flowers? Or does anyone know where I can find out more legal info on this? thank you in advance


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Carol
Zone: 4
Date: 24-Mar-02 07:01 PM EST

Hi Israel, I have heard that you are not supposed to take plants, seeds or anything like that from the public parks. You could try the parks and recreation dept. if they don't know they may know where you could find out about the bi-laws for city parks. Carol


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel
Zone: 5a
Date: 24-Mar-02 07:17 PM EST

thank you Carol, but do u know anything about non-parks? u know like wild natural woods. by the way, is taking soil ok?(again, small portion)


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Carol
Zone: 4a
Date: 24-Mar-02 07:47 PM EST

Hi again Israel, I am sorry I don't know about the natural woods, or non parks. I had only heard that in the city parks it was not allowed, I guess because with all the thousands of people, if everyone took something even small amounts, there soon wouldn't be anything left. Carol


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Susan
Zone: 6a
Date: 24-Mar-02 08:44 PM EST

In any National Park, it is strictly forbidden to remove anything. You are not even allowed to pick flowers. From the General Regulations:

'10. No person shall remove, deface, damage or destroy any flora or natural objects in a Park except in accordance with a permit issued under subsection 11(1) or 12(1).

11. (1) A Director-general may issue a permit to any person authorizing the person to take flora or natural objects for scientific purposes from a Park or to remove natural objects for construction purposes within a Park.

(2) A permit issued by the Director-general under subsection (1) shall specify the kind and amount of and the location from which flora or natural objects may be removed and the conditions applicable to the permit.

(3) Where natural objects are removed for the purpose of constructing other than a public work within a Park, every person on removal of such natural objects shall pay to the superintendent the sum of twenty-five cents for each cubic yard of such natural objects or fraction thereof.

12. (1) The superintendent may issue a permit to any person authorizing the person to remove, deface, damage or destroy any flora or natural objects in a Park for purposes of Park management.

(2) A permit issued by the superintendent under subsection (1) shall specify the kind and amount of and the location from which flora or natural objects may be removed, defaced, damaged or destroyed and the conditions applicable to the permit. '

Beyond that, I think things are very much a hodge-podge and less is protected than one is inclined to think. You might want to buy or look in a library for Lorraine Johnson's New Ontario Naturalized Garden. If I remember correctly, she talks about what's legal and what's not in Ontario...


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel
Zone: 5a
Date: 25-Mar-02 10:59 PM EST

thank you for ur help,


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: bruce
Zone: 3
Date: 27-Mar-02 10:33 AM EST

I don't know if it is legal or not but I wouldn't do it.There are many places you can get wildflower seed that is native to a particular area.We have wild Lady Slippers here and I would love some in my beds but mother nature put them there for a reason so I leave them alone.Please let her keep doing what she does best and assist her by buying your seed.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: George Griffin
Zone: 5a
Date: 27-Mar-02 03:40 PM EST

I would say a person would be better to purchase plants from a business that grows them for that purpose. It is a good idea to use naturalized or native plants. But taking them from thier native habitat is very irresponsible. The degree to which it is anacceptable increases with time. I have seen Trailing Arbutus stripped from lands in Nova Scotia only to be sold at roadside so the buyer could experience the beauty and scent from the luxury of thier car. Such practices are innocent in small children but in adults who are supposed to teach children respect for limited resources it is unthinkable.

There are some instances where collecting native species may well save them from extinction. It takes a dedicated researcher working with naturalists to accomplish this. If you would want to find a resource for native plants from growers, search thenet. If you don't have any luch, email me and I will get the information to you. Best regards G.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Dave Sallis
Zone:
Date: 07-Apr-02 12:48 PM EST

There is a Wildflower society in Toronto. They grow most plants from seed or division. In early summer they have a huge plant sale open to the public at Edwards Gardens in Toronto.(corner of Leslie and Lawrence) Well worth going to if you are interested in native plants not ripped out of the local forests.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Rachel
Zone: 6b
Date: 07-Apr-02 03:34 PM EST

It is always illegal to pick protected plants, so unless you can tell the difference, don't. Also, in Ontario it is illegal to pick trilliums.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel
Zone: 5a
Date: 07-Apr-02 03:57 PM EST

Thank you for all the info. I dont mean to pick the fancy ones or the protected one.(I am not a big fan in collecting certain plants) sometimes its just hard to find the "most common" seeds from store, because they are too common and stores dont sell them. thx Dave I was already planning on buying some from there. thx again


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: sgbotsford@yahoo.com
Zone: 3
Date: 11-Apr-02 06:55 PM EST

I will only comment on the ethical situation, not the legal one.

My collecting standard is as follows: If everyone who comes by here took what I took would it make much of a difference?

If I'm in a city park where there are 40,000 people per year, I take nothing, other than picking up litter.

If I am in Willmore Wilderness Provincial Park off trail, above treeline, and there is a large population of an interesting stonecrop I feel no compunction about taking a sample. I know fully well that there are probably less than a dozen people per year that come through there. Even if, with the very short growing season, it takes 10 years for it to recover my predations are insignificant comparied to the natural damage that occurs daily from rock slides and goats feet.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel (israelyang@yahoo.com)
Zone: 5a
Date: 11-Apr-02 09:03 PM EST

I feel a lot better


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: JoanneS
Zone: 3a
Date: 12-Apr-02 02:25 PM EST

Well, taking anything from a provincial park, no matter how cleverly you can rationalize it, is still THEFT. It is illegal, all across Canada, to remove plants from provincial parks. You are assuming only a dozen or so people follow your trail, but really, it doesn't matter. You are stealing. As for natural damage, it is just that - natural. What you are doing is not natural. It is interference. Shame on you.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel (israelyang@yahoo.com)
Zone: 5a
Date: 12-Apr-02 03:52 PM EST

I knew fully well before I posted my 1st message that I'd be scorned by many. But still I decided to ask because I know that I will not take anything from a park because it belongs to the government and is meant to be shared by the public. But when it comes to non-park(see my 2-nd post) I wasnt so sure it there's some law to keep people from taking insignificant or unprotected items from the nature. I guess it's because the majority of us live in the cities, so we dont get to see the trees being chooped down for the wooden statue in our livingrooms(or the wooden barrel we use for gardening) and the lose of home for many wild animals. I dont intend to rationlize my action, since by law, its legal, and as for the ethnical side, I do blame myself when I collect seeds from the nature, and I will try my best to keep it down to the minium. Joanne, thank you for the post, it really taught me something. Thx everyone, all of us want to improve the environment we live in.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: JoanneS
Zone: 3a
Date: 15-Apr-02 02:53 PM EST

Israel, my comments were directed to sgbotsford. You are not the one taking the plants from the provincial park. I should have indicated that.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Glen
Zone: 3
Date: 16-Apr-02 01:27 AM EST

Israel - there's a question of ethics vs. legality here. I'm sure this varies from province to province, but here (SK) at least if you're on crown land, (not in a park, private land, or nature preserve), there's no law against digging up almost any plant. Very few plants are protected here (SK), more should be. By crown land I mean for example almost the entire northern half of SK that is not private land or a park, it's boreal forest that belongs to the crown.

Just because it's legal to dig up wildflowers, should you do it? Absolutely not. Leave the plants there to exist on their own and for your grandchildren to someday enjoy in the wild, too. Resist temptation, do the right thing, leave the plants alone.

But as a matter of law, in SK at least on crown land (e.g. not a park) there's nothing to stop you as long as the plant is not on the provincial protected list, and that's a very short list.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel (israelyang@yahoo.com)
Zone: 5a
Date: 16-Apr-02 10:07 AM EST

Thanks Glen, I will try my best(I can't guarantee anything ), though the temptation is great.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From:
Zone:
Date: 16-Apr-02 02:14 PM EST

Israel - no guarantees to any of us is needed. It's your conscience.

You might find however that if you dig a plant up and take it home, you're going to feel guilty every time you look at it. Not something I want to have/feel in my garden.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Carol
Zone: 5a
Date: 18-Apr-02 01:19 AM EST

Hi all, This is a very interesting thread! I just have a question, why would you (Israel) bother taking seeds etc? Are they not availiable to purchase from some nursery? Or maybe someone right here on icangarden might have what you need. Just a thought, Carol Carol


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Glen
Zone:
Date: 18-Apr-02 03:25 AM EST

I'm not sure it's illegal to collect seed in Sask. provincial parks. National Parks yes it is against the law to remove anything.

Carol makes a good point - there are more and more native plant nurseries springing to life every year in Canada. There are 5 or 6 spread across the prairie provinces that I know about. These companies offer a wide variety of native plants. Also Beavercreek Greenhouses in BC, and Alplains in Colorado offer a very good range of native alpine plants/seed. After a long search for Bessey's Locoweed (which I have only seen growing in our Grasslands National Park, is very rare here, and I really wanted to grow in my rock garden), I finally found a seed source for it both from Beavercreek and Alplains.

Some plants are not available anywhere however e.g. various native orchids. Yes you can buy a few species of Lady Slippers, but I have to find a nursery source for Green Bog Orchid (Platanthera hyperborea) which grows wild just outside my home in Regina, and I would love to grow in my garden.

By the way, anyone who wants to dig up native orchids - DO NOT DO IT - someday they will disappear to only wilderness areas if we don't leave them alone. They're slow to multiply in the wild, and sensitive to environmental disruption, they need all the help we can give them.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel (israelyang@yahoo.com)
Zone: 5a
Date: 18-Apr-02 09:51 AM EST

Hi Carol: I hope my reply will not make myself sound too greedy :{

I usually try all the nurseies I can find around my area even on the internet. And if you'd read a few posts back you'd know that I am not looking for "certain native plants" or any rare ones, "The most common plants are not being sold anywhere" For example I have been looking for a leopard frog(a very very common frog in north america) to keep, I called up almost all the petstores none of them has it, NONE!! and all they have are the toxic frogs, tropical frogs etc. because they told me leopard frogs are "too common". Another example: I have been looking for a miniture waterlily, I looked for it on the web, called up many many nurseries and spoke to many people, some of them do have it but usually are far from my house(I dont have access to a car), I also found some people said they'd order it for me but the cost adds up and its out of my budget(I am a student, no income). And it beomces very very tempting "if" a pond around my area happens to have water lilies in it, with a guilty heart, I "might"/(or might not) take a few seeds home and hoping it will not cause much damage to that ethnic group. I understand it's wrong to take home any wild plants it's why I feel guilty....


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Nancy
Zone: 5
Date: 18-Apr-02 06:20 PM EST

I, too, would like to add my voice to the those who would discourage people from digging up plants from the wild. It' heartbreaking to see the destruction created by people in areas like to Bruce Peninsula where many clumps of orchids that have been there for years suddenly disappear, leaving only a shallow hole in the ground. Many native plants, especially orchids, require very specific conditions to survive and most will not live more than a couple of year in a garden. Even in rescue situations, where a plant population is doomed to be destroyed by development, many plants don't make it unless the rescuer is well educated on their requirements for growth.

I do collect some seed from the wild, but keep the quantities to well under 10% of what's there, so that the population isn't impacted. Over the years I've found that even with that I tend to gather far more than I need. My concience is clear with gathering just a few seeds.

I would suggest that you first research what you'd like to grow to make sure the plants are suitable for your garden conditions. When I first started, I tried several types of attractive, but non-native plants, like toadflax and tansy, that grew to large and aggressively (with few blooms) in my good soil. They were an absolute nightmare to get rid of when I realized my mistake.

Check out the North American Native Plant Society website www.nanps.org. They have the details for the native plant sale coming up at Edwards Gardens on May 11 and list numerous other commercial native plant sources. Or go the the library and check out Lorraine Johnson's books. They're full of great information on growing native plants.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Rachel
Zone: 6b
Date: 19-Apr-02 03:43 PM EST

I think Nancy is right. Why go through all the ethical bother if the speciman will not flourish in your surroundings anyway? Also, a dose of perspective is needed. Would anyone care if you dug up their dandilions, and planted them in your garden? What if you gathered purple loosestrife seeds and planted them by your pond? Or skunk cabbage or posion ivy? would that be contraversial? I don't think so. Growing native plants in gardens may, in the not to distant future, be the only way we can preserve our natural heritage.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Carol
Zone: 5a
Date: 20-Apr-02 07:26 PM EST

Hello Israel, Yes I did read the previous threads, and that you wanted some native plants that seem to be very hard to find. However I still felt that you should be able to buy in person or by mail order what you wanted. I guess I didn't understand that you couldn't get some plants, I wonder why? If there is a market usually there is a supplier. I am a fairly new gardener, there are so many beautiful, interesting and glorious plants to purchase, it never occured to me to want something I couldn't have. But on occasion I have thought, (to save money)wouldn't be nice to just take some of that bush or plant that no one seems to own, I have never acted on the impulse, but I do understand the feeling. Also, I think the best kind of place for a common frog might be a bait supply store, but why would you want to keep a frog, are you really a princess? LOL That made me laugh, I hope my humour hasn't offended you. Let me know if you find the frog.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel (israelyang@yahoo.com)
Zone: 5a
Date: 20-Apr-02 08:27 PM EST

Hi Carol: I am rather a new gardener as well(about 2, 3 years). And sorry I couldnt get you to understand that I am not looking for some hard-to-find native plants. let me say it this way: Oneday I go to the wood beside the highway, and I walk and I walk, suddenly I see a large population of some flower that I dont know the name of, and I say to myself, wow it could be a nice addition to my poorly looking balcony, so maybe I will take some seeds home and try to raise them there. (Of course now I'd hesitate to do do so after all these discussion :P) If I am really looking for some specific plants I think I will just buy them(just seeded some McKenzie wildflower seeds yesterday). I salute you for not obeying ur thirst! And thank you for understanding the feeling. You really think that I can find a common frog from a bait store? never thought of it! cool thx. why would I want to keep a frog? well, let me tell you some of my b/g, i grew up in the country where most the kids(included me) could get most of the things we wanted from the nature. We owned the nature and the nature owned us. My parents rarely bought toy for me, I made little toys myself, anything I found in the nature could become something useful or something to play with, I grew up playing with frogs, beetles, crikits, dogs, crawfish and animals and critters u name them. that's a place where we human, had to pick grass/plants weekly before they get way too tall in my school, where we counted the dead forg bodies(crushed by cars) on our way to school after a rainny night(sometimes up to hundreds). I and other kids invented games to "destroy the mother nature"(what else could we have played with? cows?), i'd never had any guilt or bad feeling about "using the nature"(of course there's a limit) and never knew that i was supposed to have these feelings. And ever since I moved to Toronto this big city, everything seems to be so protected and I-will-sue-you-if-you-touch-that. and here i've never seen a beetle that is bigger than one inch, here no insects making noise in the night, everything is different. Soil is something you have to "buy" from a store, seeds are something you can't take home from the wildflwoers, fishing is something that requires a licience, duckweed is something you have to order from the internet for $3 a cup plus shipping and handling. This is a great challenge to me, because a city has its own rule and I have to learn to repect and follow it. A city has a very limited space for wild life to grow this is something I know yet hard to adjust, I hope I will be able to learn the city rule very soon in the future. oop, never really told you about why would I want to get a common frog. well, I think its just a memory i want to keep with me. "I hope my humour hasn't offended you" ~ dont worry, I am not easily offended, i am a very flexible person. :)


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: JoanneS
Zone:
Date: 22-Apr-02 01:51 PM EST

I had missed the part about the frog. A bait store is the best source. I'm not too much of an expert on frogs, but is a leopord frog the same as a northern leapord frog? If so, that is an endangered species out in my neck of the woods, which makes the thought of "collecting" one even worse. If it is different, ask your local pet store to bring some in. Mine will do this for me if I am looking for an unusual type of fish.

As well, if you have the right conditions in your yard for frogs, won't they turn up on their own? And, if you go and buy them, and put them in your pond, are you sure they will survive?

My local plant store will also bring in unusual plants if I ask them and commit to buying them in advance.

If you are truly having trouble getting seed, try Seeds of Distinction or search for heritage seeds on the internet.

I find it hard to believe that in this day and age, people need to steal in order to get the plant they want. If the plant is that hard to get, guess what, it is probably endangered and is even more reason to leave it alone.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Sherwood Botsford
Zone: 3
Date: 09-May-02 12:09 PM EST

In reply to JoanneS:

Theft is wrong in our society because the taking of something denies that thing to the rightful owner. If it is not possible to detect it's absence who have I deprived?

I agree that taking all of a clump of a rare species is improper. I don't agree that taking a specimen from an abundent population in a sparsely visited area is theft, as it does not deny that object to someone else, indeed, in the case of stonecrops, my propagation of it in my garden, and my giving clones to interested visitors can increase the appreciation of an otherwise little seen plant. (Like the leopard frog mentioned above, our local nurseries do not carry native alpine species.

To someone else who commented about the futility of transplating from the wild: To date about 60% of my transplants have been successful.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From:
Zone:
Date: 09-May-02 01:03 PM EST

Theft is the 'act of taking something that does not belong to you'. I don't care how you try to twist the logic around, you are stealing something that does not belong to you. If it wasn't such a big deal as you state, just ask the owner for permission. I suspect you would be put in jail. It's also disturbing to see that 40% of the plants you steal, die. What a waste!!!! P.S. It's a good thing you use such a fake name or we might send the police after you, Mr. Sherwood Botsford.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Glen
Zone:
Date: 10-May-02 12:40 AM EST

Sherwood - I think Joanne's point was that in Alberta parks it is illegal to remove plants, and that action is against the law... no matter how you might consider it. Consider it theft from the rest of Alberta's taxpayers.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Dawn
Zone: 3
Date: 10-May-02 01:21 AM EST

I agree with the anonymous post. 40% is a waste. I guess it's that kind of attitude that Sherwood has that explains why plants are added to the endangered list. How one justifies things to oneself always amazes me!


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Nancy
Zone: 5
Date: 15-May-02 05:17 PM EST

I'd agree with the previous posters that 60% success rate is not necessarily cause for celebration, depending on what type of plant's you're talking about. If they were rescued orchids I'd applaud. Uncommon plants are usually uncommon for a reason, in that they likely have very specific habitats that may be very difficult to duplicate in the garden. Often seeds of difficult species may be hard to get commercially because the chances of success are low, there's a narrow window of seed viability, or it takes very long time to get a bloom. For instance, many of the lady slipper orchids take 7 years to bloom from seed.

The flip side of that are what Israel's been talking about ... the very common roadside plants that can't seem to be found in the catalogs. I'd suggest (and warn) that again, they may not there for a good reason. Not that they can't be grown in a garden, but that they may grow all too well. I'm currently fighting a running battle with Jerusalem artichoke that I made the mistake of starting from wild-collected seed three years ago. It looked so lovely in its tall dense clumps on the roadside that September. I wasn't able to keep it contained to the area I wanted it in, it flopped horribly, and looked awful. To make matters worse it's invaded the neighbours yard, so, unless I get their permission to dig up the back corner of their lot, I'll never ever be rid of it.

Bottom line, there is often good reason why some species are not commercially available. Before either starting plants from wild collected seed or considering taking them from the wild (which I do not advocate), do some homework and find out if the plant is truly suitable for your garden.


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: Call me TGC: Third Generation Collector
Zone: 6a
Date: 15-May-02 10:39 PM EST

I'm amazed at the passionate discourse on this subject. I'm all for protecting the environment, but surely taking a few seeds can't hurt anyone. Good grief, what would my grandmother say? Some of you sound like you'd have her taken out and shot. She was an avid gardener and dedicated environmentalist, although perhaps not up to your modern standard. She gathered seeds from the wild (and also from public and private gardens) her whole life, snapping off one or two seed heads whenever she encountered a plant she wanted. I heard Des Kennedy refer to this in one of his very funny presentations and everyone in the audience seemed to recognize it for what it was: a harmless way of collecting seeds that seems to be a habit of little old ladies. Both my mother and I have followed in her footsteps. Perhaps I should be more careful: the seed police might arrest me!

Remember, Israel never said he coveted endangered species.

Get a life, people!!!


Subject: RE: Collecting plants, legal?
From: israel (israelyang@yahoo.com)
Zone: 5a
Date: 15-May-02 11:14 PM EST

Thank you everyone for your input there. And thanks to Nancy and TGC for understanding me and reading my posts carefully. I was confused when I asked this question because I didn't know what other people were thinking about this and the legal issue. Now I am getting different answers from different perspective which is a good thing because there might be other people who have the same problem as I do. For example, Nancy writes about the roadside plants may spread rapidly. I do not have a yard so it's not one of my concerns but it might help other people who have a yard to think about transplanting them.


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