Update on Tree Planting Scheme

It’s been a while since we wrote anything detailed about the Trees for Life planting scheme, so this post is set to give a broad outline and the latest details.

Planting Scheme

Last July, Bob Blackaby put in a Trees for Life bid for 15 trees. This was approved in October. Since then we have added 3 more trees to the scheme, and have been invited to request another dozen or more. We have made arrangements with Sue Amey of the Parks Department to have the initial 18 trees planted by the maintenance crew. We have also been making arrangements for a tree planting ceremony and follow-on events mainly with children in mind, but also with Kings Heath Floral Trail, Walk 2000 and other community groups.

Today, Sue rang to say that the trees have arrived and are ready to be planted, so we have to hurry up and get the rest of the plan together! We have provisionally agreed that there will be a ceremony on 8 March, and that most of the trees will be planted before then, with some held back until then. So if you want to help plant a tree between now and the 8th, please get in touch with us promptly!

The current schedule of trees is as shown in the following table.

Latin Name Common Name Number to be planted
Acer campestre Field Maple 5
Fagus sylvatica Beech 2
Fraxinus excelsior Ash 1
Populus nigra Black Poplar, Lombardy poplar 1
Quercus robur Oak 3
Sorbus aria species Whitebeam 5
Tilia cordata Small Leaf Lime 1

The locations of the first 18 trees are mostly between the car park and the long pond. Several will be planted along the drive, three along Shutlock Lane, and near the copse next to the car park. There is also a tree being planted as a memorial elsewhere in the park.

Additional planting plans will be developed once the Historical Survey is complete and we have a clear idea of appropriate locations for additional trees.

Planting Ceremony

One of the Trees for Life requirements is that we arrange ongoing commuity involvement in caring about the trees. The basic tree care will be provided by Mother Nature with help from the ServiceTeam maintenance crew. But we as a community have to show that we care about these trees too, by keeping an eye on them and showing our appreciation in appropriate ways. The first thing we want to do is help with the planting where possible, and acknowledge the gift we’ve been given by the Trees for Life campaign. We also want to add this to our ongoing programme of tree-related events. So we are arranging a ceremonial event around the planting of the last few trees. The focus will be on twinning trees and people, where people start an ongoing diary for each tree. We will be handing out starter packs as part of the ceremony. We want each pack to include a tree identification guide, a notebook for recording information, a Polaroid-type photo of each person with their chosen tree, some sort of tree quiz or game, a certificate, treats and refreshments, and gift coupons from local businesses.

This initial ceremony will be followed by two annual events, one in May called Arbor Day, and another in November during National Tree week. At those two times people will be invited to update their packs and to display information they’ve collected about trees in the park. We hope to have a variety of activities during each event, and will use the opportunity to have a bit of fun and sharing.

Summing Up

If you want to participate in the planting or ceremony, please get in touch. The plan is to have a ceremonial planting on Saturday 8 March with activities for children. You may email us (also via the website), or ring Ellen on 444 0819. Doubly so if you are able to help make arragements!

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