Contributed by Christopher Parsons
Dubbed ‘The Bushland Shire’, it is already renowned as one of the greenest places in Australia. Bolstering that reputation, the citizens of Hornsby Shire on Sydney’s upper north shore are now celebrating planting the 30,000th tree to go into their soil in less than two years!
The extraordinary tree-planting milestone was passed as Hornsby Shire Council announced the creation of a unique Eucalyptus Arboretum and a delightful new ‘Children’s Forest’ discovery space to be added to its majestic 55-hectare Fagan Park at Galston.
The Eucalyptus Arboretum will be a permanent sanctuary for all 100 species of Eucalypts in the Sydney Bioregion.
“The arboretum will be the only place in New South Wales where all our magnificent Eucalypts can be seen and enjoyed by us and as our legacy to future generations,” Hornsby Shire Mayor, Philip Ruddock said.
“Hornsby Shire’s new arboretum and our exciting new Children’s Forest will allow people of all ages to get up close with the trees, including unique species found only in Hornsby Shire.”
The Children’s Forest, too, is designed to inspire, excite and educate youngsters with informal spaces for discovery, a treehouse to clamber on, adventure trails, an outdoor classroom and plenty of informative signage. This will be progressively delivered over future years.
“This latest remarkable achievement, planting 30,000 trees in so short a time and during the height of the COVID crisis, bushfires and floods, could not possibly have been achieved without the selfless support of the 2,280 community volunteers who helped us plant them.
“Trees, including native trees, are essential to the preservation of the Shire’s unique natural habitat, including the many animals and other plant species that depend on our trees. Also, tree planting is at the forefront of efforts to make our places cooler and more liveable.”
Mayor Ruddock expressed his appreciation to the NSW Government for assisting with funding support under the Premier’s ‘Priority Greening our City Grant Program’.