Header Ads

 New website available at www.slguardian.org

Save the street trees

- The Municipalities and Town Councils should conduct Census of Street Trees with the help of Volunteers in each area to take a count of healthy, unhealthy and dangerous trees with a view to preparing a comprehensive report for maintaining these wonderful trees with care and also for conducting a replanting program to replace the trees which have got uprooted.
________________________

by P. Mutukumarana


(June 07, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Have you ever looked at the trees beautifully waving their branches, alongside the streets in Colombo, Kandy or any other big city and admired their splendor while walking past them? Most probably not. We unashamedly walk past these trees without even putting a glance to check whether the trees are growing well or not. Most of us forget the fact that these street trees are our best friends.

They provide cool shade for the weary traveler and provide shelter when raining. They get rid of the vehicle fumes and clean the air. Our forefathers were thoughtful enough to plant these wonderful trees which are now nearing extinction, through our negligence. I wonder whether there is any organized program to care for these trees by the relevant authorities. Clearly, the general public has no sense of responsibility at all, to save or look after these trees. In other words we are not “Tree Conscious”

There are magnificent and enormous Mara trees proudly standing on either side of Munidasa Cumaratunga Mawatha and Baudhdhaloka Mawatha in Colombo 07, which may be over 100 years old. We had been silently enjoying the beautiful scenery of these without paying any attention to them. As far as I know, no known organization or a body has got together to protect and look after these wonderful trees except the Municipality which rushes a team of workers to cut down fallen trees during a storm or heavy rain.

Some of these trees which are very old have to be studied carefully by experts to decide whether any decayed or oversized branches need pruning to maintain the beauty and the equilibrium of the tree. Most of these trees have got uprooted merely because such pruning was not done in time.

Most of the public are not aware of the common names of most of the street trees except Mara. It is the responsibility of the experts to identify and put up name boards to enlighten school children, the general public and tourists about such trees.

The Municipalities and Town Councils should conduct Census of Street Trees with the help of Volunteers in each area to take a count of healthy, unhealthy and dangerous trees with a view to preparing a comprehensive report for maintaining these wonderful trees with care and also for conducting a replanting program to replace the trees which have got uprooted.

I had the opportunity of taking part in a Street Tree Census conducted by the New Your Parks Department during 2005 and managed to identify many varieties of street trees which were unknown to the residents there. Most of the volunteers who took part in the Census were of the opinion that taking part in such an exercise was enjoyable and a time well spent. We had to identify the variety of the tree, its’ girth, ground conditions and the general health of the tree. These data were then recorded in a format using the Internet. A comprehensive report was prepared by the New York Parks Department using the above data.

If any organization wishes to get more details of how this tree census was conducted they can contact me through “p.muthu@gmail.com”. I am more than willing to help any organization in such and endeavor.
- Sri Lanka Guardian

No comments

Powered by Blogger.