19 June 2020

Watering program to help 16,000 young trees thrive

| My Gungahlin
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With Canberra experiencing one of its hottest December weeks in recent times, the ACT Government’s annual tree watering program will be in full swing. The program sees over 16,000 developing trees in streets and parks watered over summer. The trees are watered using non-potable water from Canberra’s urban lakes.

“The tree watering program was a great success last year, with less than two per cent of young trees in the program lost to environmental factors, such as heat stress, and we hope to achieve similar results or better this year,” Michael Brice, Manager, Urban Treescapes, said.

“Many of the young trees to be watered during this program are located in newly developing suburbs of Canberra, with more than 6300 trees in Gungahlin and a further 3600 trees in Molonglo.

“An additional 7000 new trees will be handed over to the ACT Government during the coming months and added to the program while new trees and shrubs planted along Majura Parkway will also be watered as part of the program. It is anticipated each tree will be watered at least three times.

“While ACT Government staff and contractors will do all they can to help ensure the survival of young trees, if residents also want to help out by giving their naturestrip or local park trees a drink with a bucket of water once a week that would be great.”

Mr Brice said the ACT Government has recently finished planting of 450 new trees in 56 suburbs around the ACT to improve visual amenity.

“The trees were planted along Canberra’s major arterial roads including Ginninderra Drive, Drake Brockman Drive and Horse Park Drive, residential streets and in parks and reserves including Black Mountain Peninsula. Planting was also carried out in suburbs including Forde, Holt, McKellar, Lyons and Richardson.

“Both native and exotic trees were planted as part of this program including Eucalypts, Casuarinas, Crepe myrtles, Chinese elms and White cedars. These tree types were chosen because they are suitable for Canberra’s climate while also improving visual amenity.

“The ACT Government manages one of the largest urban forests in Australia, containing over 750,000 trees in the urban area, and this work reinforces the ACT Government’s ongoing commitment to the management of Canberra’s world renowned urban forest.”

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