The Haliburton County Master Gardeners (HCMG) are inviting the public to step into nature at the Minden Riverwalk, a popular walking path in the heart of downtown Minden.

The HCMG said that by May 26, people will see more than 20 orange and green signs along both sides of this section of the Gull River.

According to Master Gardener member Shelley Fellows, “this free, self-guided walking tour of the Minden Riverwalk documents the flora and fauna on both sides of this section of the Gull River. Called ‘stepping into nature,’ the multi-media walking tour includes photos, detailed descriptions of plants, insect information and gardening tips, along with audio stories. Everything is accessible via a smartphone app called PocketSights,”

In 2009, the shoreline was restored, and a pathway and pedestrian bridge installed. Fourteen years on, the place looks very different, said Master Gardener Carolyn Langdon. “Erosion has been stopped, native plants have matured, and the animal, bird and insect species have returned to nest, to feed and to pollinate the trees and flowers,” she said. “The tour documents this story of biological restoration, and we hope that it will inspire people to take steps to renaturalize their own property.”

The public is invited to join the opening of ‘stepping into nature’ with a community launch, May 26 at 10:30 a.m. on the trail at the corner of Invergordon Street and Bobcaygeon Road. The formal program with a “unique” ribbon cutting will be addressed by mayor Bob Carter, County warden Liz Danielson, U-links executive director, Andrew Gordon, and Haliburton County Development Corporation program and operations coordinator Heather Reid. Each attendee will receive a free native plant and Master Gardeners will lead free tours of the Riverwalk.

The walking tour was supported by a Local Initiatives Program grant from HCDC. The HCMG and entomologists from Trent University conducted insect research along the Riverwalk. The project was also supported by the Township of Minden Hills and local businesses.

HCMG is a community service organization. Members are certified Master Gardeners, with expertise in horticulture, botany and gardening in harmony with nature. They are celebrating 21 years in the Haliburton Highlands