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The Oak Grove

The Oak GroveBur Oak trees were not common in the forests of the Kawarthas prior to the great migration of the nineteenth century. The upland forests tended to be sugar maple, basswood, beech, pine and hemlock. Cedar and tamarack dominated in wetlands, while elms were scattered throughout. The north bank of the Fenelon River was, however, an unusual locale, having been scoured by the flow of this watercourse, which once drained a glacial great lake, carving the Fenelon Gorge in the process. Near the river's source there is very little soil. The shaley ground is excessively drained for most trees, but also intermittently wet. Bur Oaks are one of the few trees that can mature in such conditions, though they grow slowly, meaning that they are often surprisingly old for their size.

The Maryboro Oak Grove is one of the rare natural plains of southern Ontario, similar to the Oak Ridges Moraine. With its natural park-like appearance, this site has been a place to camp or eat lunch with friends for centuries. For the first generations of settlement, villages like Fenelon Falls did not have the time or resources to invest in creating public parks, so this site hosted tourists, church picnics, tennis matches, community events and afternoon teas. Now a designated historic site, the grove remains one of Ontario's natural landmarks.