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Massive tree planting programme begins

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Photo of Councillor Sue Dann planting a tree at Tothill Park

Thousands of new trees will be planted in Plymouth this winter as part of a monumental winter programme.

Earlier this year, the Council launched the Plan for Trees investment programme, which promised a bare minimum 2,800 new trees across the city within the next three years. This commitment to investing in the value of trees also features strongly in the Council's Climate Emergency Action Plan.

This winter will see many of the initial 2,800 arrive and planted at 67 different locations across the city, including parks, streets and on verges and roundabouts. 

On the whole, planting will take place in areas with less than average tree cover than some of the leafier parts of the city to ensure equal access to the benefits of trees and greenspace for everyone, no matter of their postcode. 

In all, it is planned that 1,010 large standard trees and 1,500 whips will go in the ground before April, enhancing the city's already dense urban forest and providing a haven for wildlife.

Most of the trees will be of UK-native species although in some parks and residential streets, there will be a variety of flowering and ornamental examples and will help to replace a number of trees lost to ash dieback. 

What’s the different between a standard tree and a whip?

A standard tree is a big tree that at the time of planting is already six to eight feet tall. They are usually three or four years old before they're planted. Only standard trees can be planted in urban areas such as streets and parks.

A whip is a younger, slender, unbranched tree. They are often just a few feet high at the time of planting.

Councillor Sue Dann, Cabinet member for Street Scene and the Environment, was on hand to help with the planting of the first new trees at Tothill Park earlier this week.

Sue, pictured above, said: "It's always a pleasure to get my wellies on and go and help out the teams on the ground. I'll be able to look at this tree with pride when I pass it as it grows!

"This planting programme again demonstrates our commitment to our green spaces which provide our communities with cleaner air, improved wildlife and space to exercise, play and relax in.

"We know that trees are important to people - in our research for the Plan for Trees we found out that 97 per cent of respondents agreed that trees were an important feature of the city - and so it's great to see so many planted this winter."

This first round of planting is being funded by the Forestry Commission’s Urban Tree Challenge Fund, and forms the next important phase of the Plymouth Tree Challenge. The planting programme is being led by PCC in partnership with Plan for Trees partners including Plymouth Tree Partnership

Many of the tree planting projects across the city have been designed in collaboration with our Plan for Trees partners with special thanks to Plymouth Tree Partnership for their ideas and expertise.

You can find out more about the Plan for Trees and the Plymouth Tree Challenge here.