Artist's impression of the new & improved streetscape of Cavendish Street

Sourced with thanks to Marrickville Council.

Marrickville Council has given notice that they intend to remove a Hill’s Weeping Fig (Ficus macrocarpa var. hilli ) outside 25 – 27 Cavendish Street Enmore.

Council gives the following reasons for removal –

  • “Tree has outgrown the location & is unsustainable.
  • Tree is causing significant damage to public & private infrastructure that cannot be overcome by any other means.
  • Major branches have been identified to have high failure potential due to structural weakness.”

Three other mature Hill’s Fig trees have already been removed from Cavendish Street.

Council says the fig tree will be replaced as part of a full street upgrade that includes the planting of three trees in the road shoulder with a structural soil. The tree species is to be Weeping Lilly Pilly (Waterhousia floribunda) in super-advanced 800L container size.

The Weeping Lilly Pilly trees will be planted in tree pits in the road.  If I remember correctly each tree will have 20-square-metres of soil in which to grow.  This is a new approach to tree planting by Marrickville Council that should see more large street trees being planted using a system that prevents root damage to infrastructure & which provides decent soil for them to grow in.  I am happy about this & hope to see it become the norm.

Using super advanced trees is also a great move.  This has been done recently in parks, but it is the first I know of where trees of this size will be used in street tree plantings.  It will produce an immediate & positive effect on the streetscape & should prevent tree vandalism, as well as give the trees a greater chance of survival.

Only two parking spaces will be lost & all street trees will be surrounded by a water permeable surface.

Council says, “In addition 12 new trees will be planted, with 2 replacing 2 x Prunus sp. located on the northern side of the road.”  I understand this to mean that two other trees will be removed.  The trees on Council’s plan show they intend to plant Gordonias & Prunus.  I cannot read what type of Prunus species though.

Council is also giving residents the opportunity to have verge gardens.  I hope they take up this offer as it is a hot street & verge gardens cool the street, as well as offer beauty.  Less concrete is always a bonus in my opinion.

The Weeping Lilly Pilly is a fast-growing Australian native rainforest tree that grows well in a range of soils & can reach a height of between 8-15 metres.  They have non-invasive roots.  They produce large clusters of white flowers in summer followed by green berries with a pinkish tinge. Both the flowers & the berries are attractive & are preferred food of a range of native wildlife.  They are a lovely tree.

Prunus is not a tree that excites me, but they do flower in spring for around 3-weeks.

Gordonia on the other hand is a much more interesting evergreen tree that is long-flowering from autumn to spring.  The large white flowers with yellow centres fall to the ground sunny-side up & look just like fried eggs.  Gordonia is native to south-east Asia, is slow growing only reaching 3-5 metres in height.  The tree has been renamed Franklinia axillaris.   I wrote about this tree here –

You can read more about Marrickville Council’s plans for Cavendish Street here  –

The deadline for submissions is Friday 21st February 2014.

The plans for Cavendish Street

The plans for Cavendish Street.  Click to enlarge.