Growing A Legacy: The Impact of Seed Tree Sponsors

The Invest in Nature initiative by Island Nature Trust is more than a call to action; it’s a pledge to safeguard Prince Edward Island’s natural landscapes and protect them in perpetuity. In the heart of this conservation effort lies the Seed Tree Sponsorship program, an avenue that allows us to honor and protect the magnificent seed trees of our Island’s forests. These venerable trees, often termed the matriarchs of our woodlands, play an indispensable role in the regeneration of our forests, ensuring the continuity of their unique species.

Charlottetown Toyota: Sponsors a yellow birch Seed Tree in Dunk River Natural Area

Islanders and Island businesses have heeded this call to protect our forests and have embarked on a transformative journey. Among them is Charlottetown Toyota, a local business that recognizes the pivotal role they can play in preserving our natural heritage.

When asked about what inspired Charlottetown Toyota to sponsor an Island Nature Trust Seed Tree and why this initiative holds special significance for their organization, Matt MacLennan explained, “After witnessing the devastating impact of post-tropical storm Fiona on Prince Edward Island’s forests, it was clear that we had to take action. The storm’s aftermath galvanized our community to protect our wildlife, and we were deeply moved by the loss of trees and wildlife. Being a local Island business, we felt a strong connection to the cause, especially since the hurricane had the most significant impact on Islanders.”

The alignment of Seed Tree Sponsorship with Charlottetown Toyota’s values and mission as a local business in Prince Edward Island is evident. Matt stated, “Our family business has a deep connection to wildlife and our commitment to Seed Tree Sponsorship emerged from a desire to make a meaningful impact in the wake of post-tropical storm Fiona, rather than spreading our support too thin. It’s a focused and meaningful way to contribute to the recovery effort.”

Marie-Ann Bowden: Sponsors a sugar maple Seed Tree in the Jean & Stewart MacKay Natural Area

Marie-Ann Bowden is a long-term supporter and current board member of Island Nature Trust. Her commitment to conservation is driven by her global travel experiences in highly populated areas, which made her realize the importance of preserving natural areas. She believes that when an opportunity arises to protect and conserve natural spaces, it should be seized to avoid the need for costly reinvention or recovery efforts in the future.

Marie-Ann’s support is deeply rooted in her personal connection to the natural beauty of Prince Edward Island and her experiences living out West. The inspiration behind her participation in Seed Tree Sponsorship she says is quite straightforward: “After spending 30 years out West, I found myself yearning for the vibrant red maples and the colorful foliage that I missed during the fall season. These natural wonders were not as prevalent in the Western region where I resided. By sponsoring a Seed Tree and returning home to witness the rich array of colors and the breathtaking shading that our Island’s forests offer, it became evident that this endeavor would not only bring me joy but also bring happiness to many other Islanders when they experience the beauty of our forests in the autumn.”

In terms of her role in supporting the protection and regeneration of Prince Edward Island’s Wabanaki-Acadian forests and broader environment, she emphasizes “that the generous donors provide the land, but it’s essential to fulfill the expectations of maintaining, protecting, and enhancing these spaces.” Her support contributes to the stewardship initiatives of Island Nature Trust, ensuring that the natural areas are preserved for future generations.

Marie-Ann sees herself as an ambassador for the cause of forest conservation. By making a personal commitment and financial contribution, she hopes to inspire others to do the same, encouraging more people to join the efforts to protect the island’s forests.

Looking to the future, Marie-Ann Bowden envisions an optimistic future for Prince Edward Island’s native forests as long as the support for land acquisition and stewardship continues to grow. She emphasizes the importance of not wasting time and acting quickly to safeguard these natural spaces for the benefit of the island’s natural legacy.

For those interested in sponsoring a seed tree through Island Nature Trust’s program, there are various levels of participation available, ranging from $2,500 to $7,500 annually. Each level offers a unique opportunity to contribute to the preservation and restoration of our forests, allowing supporters to choose a meaningful species in one of 26 natural areas across the Province. T

To learn more about Seed Tree Sponsorship, visit

Seed Tree Sponsorship

Seed Trees in the Wabanaki-Acadian forest are elder trees highly regarded for their important seed-producing abilities. Elder trees provide an anchor for the diverse structure of the many-sized trees in their communities.

Learn how sponsorship of an INT Seed Tree will ensure these forest matriarchs continue to deliver their life-giving seed to diverse ecosystems in our natural areas across the Island.

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