The Haliburton County Master Gardeners launched a self-guided tour of the Minden Riverwalk May 26. Called ‘stepping into nature’, it can be accessed through a smartphone app called PocketSights.

The Master Gardeners have been working on the project for around six months. Master Gardener Shelly Fellows said they have planted approximately 45 native plants along the riverwalk. Some of these native plants are joe pye weed, sedges, and spruce.

Minden Mayor Bob Carter, County Warden Liz Danielson, U-Links executive director Andrew Gordon, HCDC program and operations coordinator Heather Reid, along with the Master Gardeners, were in attendance to officially kick off the event by cutting ‘the rope’.

Fellows said, “the multi-media walking tour includes photos, detailed descriptions of plants, insect information and gardening tips, along with audio stories.”

When walking beside the Gull River listening to the self-guided media tour, it gives an in-depth description of what people are experiencing. It vividly describes things such as the rainbow bench in honour of Sinclair Russell, who created Minden Pride and passed away in 2020.

There has been a massive population of geese surrounding the Gull River, which can have many health risks to humans, other natural species and water. The Master Gardeners and the township of Minden Hills have worked hard to reduce the population.

They started with letting the grass grow naturally at the edge of the river and not cutting it. This stops the geese from eating the other native plants on the riverwalk. It may take two to three years for this to be effective because geese tend to return to the same nesting locations.

The Master Gardeners gave out a free native plant to everyone, along with free tours. You can access the guided walk anytime by downloading the PocketSights app and scanning one of the QR codes on the multiple signs located along the riverwalk.