Pomona Mills Park Conservationists

The Pomona Mills Park Conservationists were founded in 1999 in order to help restore and rehabilitate the East Don River within Pomona Mills Park, Thornhill. This group of local Thornhill volunteers has organized six community tree plantings along the river as well as a many litter clean ups. Over 1,000 small shrubs and trees have been planted including approximately 16 large trees. Over 200 bags of litter have been collected.


In 2010, 10 trees, 50 shrubs and 200 wildflowers were planted. 30 bags of litter where collected in the clean up.

At the 2009 Pomona clean up, we had about 50 volunteers, who picked up 13 bags of recycling and 29 bags of garbage. It was also the 10th Anniversary of our Annual Community Planting. A number of guests, including Mayor Scarpitti, were present to help plant 180 shrubs and 70 trees. The group was presented with an award from the Town of Markham for their work restoring the park over the years.

In April 2008, the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists collected 60 bags of litter at the Annual Community Clean Up. The following week, 40 trees and 200 shrubs were planted along the banks of the East Don River, just west of the Henderson entrance to the park. 2008 was also the year that the PMPC put a plan in place for maintenance of past planting areas, including mulching around young trees and removing invasive species.

In 2007, the group began working on signs with aerial maps of the park, which are now placed at both the west and east entrances.

In April 2006, the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists collected 15 bags of litter along the banks of the East Don River in the western section of the park. Considerable debris had washed down during the August 19, 2005 flooding. In late April a community clean up resulted in another 68 bags of litter collected. There were 83 bags in total for 2006.

A meadow planting was the focus in May 2006, and the community planted over 100 native meadow perennials. The meadow is very special because it is the only tableland within the park. Thanks to the "Markham Environmental Sustainability Fund" for their generous support! The finishing touches on the meadow include two bird boxes and two bat boxes. Swallows used one of the bird boxes in the spring. Please see the gallery for photos.

Thank you so much to the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists executive and to the people in the community who have come out to help pick up litter and plant native trees, shrubs and wildflowers!

About the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists

The Pomona Mills Park Conservationists work in partnership with the Town of Markham, the Toronto Region Conservation Authority, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation, and the community.

In 2001 the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists were instrumental in saving a two-acre parcel of land known as Pomona Mills Meadow (now Thornhill Meadow) by St. Vlad's Church. This tableland was purchased by the Town of Markham and added to Pomona Mills Park. A bridge was put over the river, and a path has been installed creating a "western link" to the park.

In May 2002 the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists hosted the Third Annual Thornhill Community Environment Day. Over 150 people attended to plant shrubs and trees, enjoy the food, environmental and community booths and ceremonies.

A very successful 6th Annual Tree Planting was held in May 2005. Two clean-ups were organized in April, and a total of 100 bags of litter were collected. The Town of Markham awarded the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists the coveted "Silver Trash Can Lid Award" for the most litter picked up amongst the 48 groups participating in the Town of Markham's Pitch-In program. The first clean-up was located in the east end of Pomona Mills Park, and the second was in an "orphan area" along the East Don River at Proctor and Bayview Avenue. Special thanks to the ambitious young volunteers from Thornhill Secondary School!

Since its inception, The Pomona Mills Park Conservationists have arranged for 16 large native trees to be planted by the Town of Markham in the park, and 11 boulevard trees planted on John Street. A memorial tree grove consisting of 6 large native trees was planted in 2004 on the west side of the park in memory of the late Dr. Ann Fowle (Co-Founder). Many thanks to the members of the Thornhill Horticultural Society, as well as local residents, who generously funded the purchase of these trees for a living memorial to the much loved Dr. Ann Fowle, Co-Founder of the Pomona Mills Park Conservationists.

For more information please contact:
Barbi Lazarus
President (905) 881-1036

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Pomona Mills Park Gallery

To see more photographs of Thornhill click on Gallery in the menu or Click Here. To find out how to contribute your own photographs Click Here.