Water Week

EWN Publishing

1000 Melbourne trees die of thirst during last three years; tree expert calls for Melbourne-wide “adopt-a-tree” scheme to supply it with grey water, amidst growing public concern

Posted by waterweek on 4 October 2007

According to Rachel Kleinman and Andra Jackson, in The Age, (25/09/2007, p.5), tree expert Dr Greg Moore had called for a Melbourne-wide “adopt-a-tree” scheme, similar to that introduced by Moonee Valley City Council in January. Adopt a tree: Residents were urged to “adopt a tree” in their street and register to accept responsibility for watering it. “I would give this idea the strongest support across Melbourne, I am all for it,” Moore said. Elwood resident and children’s author Chris Milne agreed. “I think people have to take the initiative … with a bucket of grey water,” Milne said.

Concerned over dead trees: Moore was responding to residents who phoned The Age fearing many elm and plane trees were already dead because they failed to show signs of spring life. Moore, associate at Melbourne University’s Burnley Horticultural College, said he was not yet panicking. “If they have been so stressed already through lack of water they tend to come into leaf later,” he said.

1000 trees perished in the last three years: The City of Melbourne, which had responsibility for more than 55,000 trees, was forced to remove nearly 200 trees, including 16 historic elms, during autumn and winter. It removed 1000 trees in the past three years that had perished in the drought. The City of Yarra removed 30 dead trees in the past 12 months, Mayor Jenny Farrar said.

Residents urged to feed grey water to adopted trees: A spokesperson for the City of Port Phillip said more than 25 trees died in Alma Park over the past six months. “We would urge residents to adopt a tree and keep it supplied with grey water,” she said.

The Age, 25/9/2007, p. 5

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