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The Coral tree for removal is centre of this photo.

Inner West Council has given notice that they intend to remove a Coral tree (Erythrina × sykesii ) inside Weekley Park, adjacent to 89 Albany Road Stanmore.

Council gives the following reasons for removal –

  • “Tree has poor vitality and significant canopy dieback.
  • Major open wound to trunk with decay and loss of structural wood.
  • The tree poses an unacceptable level of risk to the public and property.”

The Coral tree is thought to be a “hybrid of horticultural origin, that was probably developed in Australia or New Zealand.” http://bit.ly/2tsjgKC

It is regarded as a weed tree in NSW because they can regrow from a fallen branch, a twig or stem or even suckers.  Despite this, they can easily be managed in suburban areas as shown by Bayside Council who have classified a number of their old Coral trees as significant & protected.

The condition of this Coral tree in Weekley Park is as described by Council.   They say they will replace this tree with an Illawarra flame tree (Brachychiton acerifolius) by September 2017.

While it is a shame to lose this big old Coral tree, I am pleased that it will be replaced with a native tree that puts on a great colour show & can grow to a significant size.  We need big trees.

Illawarra flame trees are native to coastal rainforests from central New South Wales to far north Queensland.  They are deciduous in winter & produce clusters of vivid red bell-shaped flowers over spring-summer, which provide food for nectar-eating birds, bees & butterflies.  Anytime an Illawarra Flame tree is added to the Inner West landscape is a win as far as I am concerned.

The deadline for submissions is this Friday 23rd June 2017.

It appears that the bark was removed to inspect the tree. You can see that it is not in great shape.

 

 

Brittle gum in Stafford Street Stanmore.

Sydney blue gum in Stafford Street Stanmore.  It looks like a sick tree with a poor canopy.  Unfortunately the canopy does not show well in this photo.  A tree behind makes it look fuller than it is.  

You can see the damage in the trunk of the Brittle Gum.

You can see the damage in the trunk of the Sydney blue gum.

Inner West Council has given notice that they intend to remove two public trees in Stanmore.

Tree number 1:  a Sydney Blue Gum (Eucalyptus saligna) outside 13 Stafford Street Stanmore.

Council gives the follow reasons for removal –

  • “Tree has previously had several major branch failures which have resulted in weakened structural integrity.
  • The tree poses an unacceptable level of risk to the public and property.”

Council says they will replace with a Jacaranda (Jacaranda mimosifolia) in the 2017 Street Tree Planting Program between May & September.

I agree this tree needs to go.   While I like Jacarandas, I think it is a shame to replace a big native tree species with an exotic.

The deadline for any submissions is Friday 3rd March 2017.

Tree number 2: a Brittle Gum (Eucalyptus mannifera) outside 62 Percival Road Stanmore.

Council gives the follow reasons for removal –

  • “Tree has poor vitality and significant canopy dieback
  • Major open wound to trunk with decay and loss of structural wood.
  • The tree poses an unacceptable level of risk to the public and property.”

Council says they will replace with a Spotted Gum (Corymbia maculata) during the 2017 Street Tree Planting Program between May & September.

I agree this tree needs to go & think it is good that Council is replacing a native with a native.

The deadline for any submissions is Friday 10th March 2017.

Brittle gum in Percival Road.

Brittle gum in Percival Road.  Not much canopy left.

The trunk of the Brittle gum in Percival Road.

The trunk of the Brittle gum in Percival Road.

Tree removal in Durham Street Stanmore

Brittle gum tree to be removed in Durham Street Stanmore – it does lean towards the house.

Marrickville Council has given notice of their intention to remove two trees in Stanmore.

Tree number 1:  a Brittle gum (Eucalyptus mannifera) outside 21 Durham Street Stanmore.

They give the following reasons for removal –

  • “Internal decay at base on tension side of lean, causing the tree to be structurally unsound.
  • Identified by 2012 Street Tree Audit for removal.
  • The tree poses an unacceptable level of risk to the public & property.”

Council says they will replace this tree with a Scribbly Gum (Eucalyptus haemastoma) by September this year.  This tree did not have a ‘Notification of Removal’ sign attached.

Tree number 2:  a Small-leafed Peppermint (Eucalyptus nicholii) outside 48.

They give the following reasons for removal –

  • “Tree has significant level of canopy dieback & deadwood & is in an advance state of decline.
  • The tree presents an unacceptable risk to the public & property.”

Council says they will replace this tree with a Brush Box (Lophostemon confertus) by September this year.  This tree did not have a ‘Notification of Removal’ sign attached either.

The deadline for submissions for both trees is Friday 6th May 2016.

Tree to be removed outside Percival Road Stanmore

Tree to be removed outside Percival Road Stanmore – the dieback is easy to see.

 

My photo does not do this space justice.  It feels good to be here.  There are lots of birds & the place feels cared for.

My photo does not do this space justice. It feels good to be here. There is  a very large Brushbox & a line of Casuarinas that sound great when there is a breeze.  There were also lots of birds & the place feels cared for.

Recently I received an email telling me about what appears to be community planting along the bicycle route in Stanmore, so we took off on our bikes to have a look.

The route takes you off Crystal Street, down York Crescent, into a path along the railway line & then out into Gordon Crescent. Then you come into something rare in this municipality – a wide strip of grass lined with mature trees. The space is like a long pocket park.

It is here that someone has been busy planting a mix of shrubs along the roadside in-between the lovely stretch of trees & also along the cyclone fence that borders the railway line. Some vines have also been planted along the fence.

I always think it is great when I see planting done by the community. Verge gardens interest & often delight me. Most street planting adds beauty as far as I am concerned & shows care toward the environment.

This particular work has the potential to create a very nice pocket of green that could double up nicely as a place of respite.   It is intermittently noisy around here because of the planes & trains, but cars are few. There are many parks in Marrickville LGA that just as noisy.

Eventually the vines will screen off the railway line. I can well imagine sitting here reading in the shade of the trees if I lived close by.

So I thank whoever is working on this patch knowing that it can be a considerable cost to buy plants & then the effort required to look after them.  With all the development due to happen in Marrickville municipality, green spaces like this one will increase in importance.

As an extra because it in in the same location - it was sad to see the whipper-snipper damage around the base of this old and grand Queensland Brushbox tree.  This tree is slowly being ringbarked.   In my opinion, it should be surrounded by some mulch to protect it.

As an extra because it in in the same location – it was sad to see the whipper-snipper damage around the base of this old and grand Queensland Brushbox tree. This tree is slowly being ringbarked. In my opinion, it should be surrounded by some mulch to protect it.

New street trees along a great stretch of Newington Road Stanmore.

New street trees along a great stretch of Newington Road Stanmore.

Another view of the new of the new street trees on Newington Road Stanmore.

Another view of the newly planted street trees on Newington Road Stanmore.

This season of street tree planting was very visible during last weekend’s bicycle ride. There are lots of new trees planted all over the municipality & they look great. Hopefully the vandals will leave them alone.

Camperdown Memorial Rest Park has also benefited from this season’s tree planting with many new trees. This park, particularly the section the runs alongside Australia Street & between the wall of St Stephen’s Church, is looking great. There are lots of tall trees here providing good shade that was being enjoyed by many groups of people.

This used to be a park with not much accessible shade, so it is great to see this change. It clearly shows the impact of tree planting & how trees & shade can improve the usability of a park, plus add significant beauty.

I think this section in Camperdown Memorial Rest Park looks gorgeous.  What is great is that even more trees have been planted in and near this area of trees.

I think this section in Camperdown Memorial Rest Park looks gorgeous. What is great is that even more trees have been planted in and near this area of trees.

People enjoying the shade in Camperdown Memorial Rest Park  and there were many groups doing exactly this in other areas of shade.

People enjoying the shade in Camperdown Memorial Rest Park.  There were many groups doing exactly this in other areas of shade.

Around 40 metres of tiny verge has been planted with a range of plants.  Many of them flower & many of them are easily propagated or grown from seed.

Around 40 metres of tiny verge has been planted with a range of plants. Many of them flower & many of them are easily propagated or grown from seed.

A number people have suggested I visit Alma Avenue in Stanmore to have a look at the verge gardens there.  I recently did & what I saw was a nice surprise.

Alma Avenue is one-way. There is no room for a footpath here, but despite the gardening limitations, a resident has created something quite beautiful – a burst of colour & richness in a tiny verge between the house & the kerb.

There are numerous examples of other places just like this all around the municipality & most are left untouched. They tend to be magnets for weeds & litter. Some are concreted.  Looking at the work done here I understood why so many people had spoken to me about this verge garden.

I thank whoever created this, as it brings much beauty to this street. Imagine if all spaces, big or small, were planted out – how nicer it would look.

Showing the variety of plants

Showing the variety of plants

Another section.  Pity about the tagging.

Another section. Pity about the tagging.

Mature Norfolk Island hibiscus to be removed.

Mature Norfolk Island hibiscus to be removed.

These two trees have been recently pruned. They are also  Norfolk Island hibiscus.

These two trees one house down fr the tree to be removed have been recently pruned. They are also Norfolk Island hibiscus.

Marrickville Council has given notification of their intention to remove a Norfolk Island hibiscus (Lagunaria patersonia) outside 46 Bruce Street Stanmore.

They give the following reasons –

  • “Internal decay.
  • Active split in main trunk.
  • The tree is heavily impacted by clearance pruning for powerlines.
  • The tree in its present state poses an unacceptable level of risk to the public and property.”

There is a split in the trunk & visible decay. The canopy is full of epicormic growth as a result of pruning for the overhead power lines.   Two other Norfolk Island hibiscus street trees one house along have been severely pruned. I expect that these two will be removed in time. Norfolk Island hibiscus grows to 12-20 metres high, so is entirely an inappropriate choice for under power lines.

Council say they will replace this tree with a Mock Orange (Murraya paniculata) in the current 2014 Street Tree Planting Program.

Mock orange (Murraya paniculata) is native to southern China, Taiwan, the Indian sub-continent, SE Asia & northern Australia. It is usually used as a hedge & grows to between 4-12 metres in height. Mock Orange (Murraya paniculata) is very similar to the cultivated exotic form of mock orange (Murraya paniculata ‘Exotica’), which is regarded as an environmental weed in NSW & QLD & a potential environmental weed in the Sydney region. Professional nursery growers are using a ‘cutting grown selection,’ which produces little or no berries. The growth habit is more compact.

The deadline for submissions is Friday 11th July 2014.  I will not be putting in a submission.

I have not seen a canopy that is mostly epicormic growth.

I have not seen a canopy that is mostly epicormic growth. The tree looks as though it was once topped.

The split & one of the finger depth holes

The split & showing the finger depth holes

This Broad-leafed Paperbark (Melaleuca quinquenervia) had already been removed.

This Broad-leafed Paperbark (Melaleuca quinquenervia) had already been removed.

Marrickville Council has given notice that they intend to remove a Broad-leafed Paperbark (Melaleuca quinquenervia) from outside 74 Corunna Road Stanmore.

Council gives the following reasons for removal –

  • “Internal trunk decay.
  • Active split in main co-dominant branch union.
  • Beyond correctional pruning.
  • Unacceptable risk to public, property and infrastructure.”

They say they will replace this tree with a Weeping lillypilly (Waterhousia floribunda)in the current 2014-15 street tree planting program.

I visited the tree today to find out that it had already been removed.  

The deadline for submissions is Friday 27th June 2014.

Close-up of the stump

Close-up of the stump

Part of the vegetable garden with scarecrow.

Part of the vegetable garden with scarecrow.

More of the veggie garden

More of the veggie garden

Hen House Palace

Hen House Palace

Today is World Environment Day, so I thought it was a good idea to post about the wonderful vegetable garden in the grounds of Stanmore Public School. I was recently fortunate to be taken on a tour of the garden.  I also got to see some magnificent trees too, but more on them later.

The school joined the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program around three years ago. This not-for-profit education program was established by celebrated chef Stephanie Alexander in 2001 to encourage children to think about food differently by learning how to grow & cook their own produce.

A professional gardener, as well as the children & parents manage the garden. Working bees are held often & anyone can ask to join in. This year they had a bumper pumpkin crop, so traded with Alfalfa House in Enmore. You can’t get fresher pumpkins than from down the road.

The garden was created in a corner area of the school grounds that was unused. Some trees were removed, but not all of them. Once again, it proves that you can have trees & a viable vegetable garden. It is a very beautiful space & I found it immediately relaxing to be in. Being Stanmore, there is lots of bird life & I imagine they do a significant amount of free pest control.

The garden is wholly organic & appears to use permaculture principles. A small frog pond was being built & there is a large comfy hen house with six hens, all with names. They enjoy being cuddled by the kids who love spending time with them.

outdoor classroom

outdoor classroom

The hens have limited free-range around the vegetable garden because they are such great diggers & can decimate a garden in a couple of hours with their enthusiasm. Instead the hen house opens to a long stretch behind the tennis courts where fruit trees have been planted. This is plenty of room for hens to do what hens love doing to keep them happy. Small twigs are placed around the base of the fruit trees to protect them. Quite a clever idea I thought.

Near the entrance to the garden is a horseshoe-shaped seat made out of old car tyres with a wooden bench on top. This is where the children have their outdoor lessons before working in the garden. Recycling is an obvious theme in the garden, which is another good thing to be teaching.

There are many compost bins & the chicken poo would add to this. The soil certainly looks black & fertile. Garden beds appear random, but they are not. They have chosen to have a rambling look instead of rows. I particularly liked this as the view changes from wherever you stand in the garden.

There is a nice scarecrow made by the children that stands beside a tree. When I was visiting there were vegetables & herbs galore. I saw the garden again a couple of weeks ago when I attended a Fabric Market & being winter, it was less dense with plants. I watched as people who had come for the markets stopped off to have a look around the garden & I also heard lots of positive comments. With so many of us having small blocks, a large vegetable garden like this is very attractive.

The school has a modern kitchen classroom & the children learn to cook a vast array of recipes. They often show photos on their Facebook page, which can be found under the school’s name.

I think it is a wonderful thing to have these programs in schools & especially a garden where young children learn how to grow plants & have the opportunity to get their hands dirty. With Nature Deficit Disorder an increasingly common problem in our cities, it is terrific to see a school undertake a program that teaches children skills that they can take into adulthood.

Working in a garden & knowing how to grow food is a fundamental step in learning to appreciate & respect nature.   These children will not be the kind who race into the garden with fly spray to kill a spider, as they will know the value of the spider & also how to relocate it if they really need to.

Being in the garden allows children’s brains to take a break from the often hyper-stimulation of modern day learning. Children who spend time in nature have been shown to have less stress, have better learning ability & retention, less anxiety & depression & of course, less obesity issues. Spending time in the vegetable garden also allows children to relax & teaches them how to enjoy the simple slower things in life. It also gets them outdoors & offers them problem-solving opportunities. I would have loved this kind of learning at school when I was a child.

You can read more at the school’s website here – http://stanmorepublicschool.info/kitchengarden/

Now for the trees….. Stanmore Public School is blessed with a large number of big beautiful trees scattered around the playground & buildings, as well as around the perimeter. A large number are significant trees.

I found the following on the school’s history page –

“Stanmore Public School opened in April 1884, probably on Monday, 7 April. The main building was designed to impress with its arched verandah, three sets of steps and the bell tower above.” [It still does impress. It is a glorious building & I am glad it is still standing.]

At its inaugural Arbor Day 1 September 1888 the school planted over 100 trees and shrubs to provide shelter from the sun.  The ceremony was attended by the Minister and other dignitaries. It may have been on this occasion that Sir Henry Parkes planted the Norfolk Island pine still growing at the school today.”

You can read a comprehensive & interesting history of the school here – http://www.stanmorepublicschool.info/OurSchool/?page_id=21

Planted by Sir Henry Parkes in 1888

Planted by Sir Henry Parkes in 1888

The Norfolk Island pine planted by Sir Henry Parkesstands between three veteran Fig trees. It is a healthy & impressive tree. It is wonderful to see such an old & historic tree in great health & protected in the grounds of a school.

The entrance gates on Cambridge Street are beautiful, as is the leafy entrance itself. Large trees grace both inside & outside the gates providing dappled sunlight & much beauty. There is a special atmosphere in the grounds at the front of the school. The building itself is gorgeous & with the arches & steps quite grand. There are seats around the large canopy trees & it feels very special to stand here. I am glad that the school is taking care of these trees.

The parents have recently planted fruit & nut trees along side the fence on Holt Street & already they look great. Other fruit trees have been planted along another fence line near he larger playground. Apart from the beauty & shade that these trees will bring, these trees will also teach other skills to the children.

Beside the entrance gates. I think this is gorgeous.

Beside the entrance gates. I think this is gorgeous.

Inside the school grounds are other wonderful trees. There is a massive Fig in the playground that has bench seating above its roots. The benches serve to protect the roots, as well as allow a shady area for children to congregate.

There was a quite a crowd of adults taking time out under this tree during the Fabric Market. There were many other large trees, all appeared to be in great condition.   Schools have become a repository of old trees, more than or equal to some of our parks.  The variety of species was great to see too.

My visit was about the vegetable garden, so hopefully I can go back one day to see if I can learn more about some of the trees on site. I will post about them with photos if I do.

The vegetable garden is visible from the footpath on Cambridge Street, so if you are walking past it is well worth stopping to have a peek through the fence.  Also, if you are at Alfalfa House, see if they have any of the school’s produce for sale. I reckon it would be a treat to eat.

I made a short video of the vegetable garden here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybUWc8m6kxs

A spectacular tree

A spectacular tree

A wonderful Fig tree

A wonderful Fig tree with newly planted trees on the right.

View into the school from Holt Street

View into the school from Holt Street.

Two of the happy hens

Two of the happy hens with the frog pond visible in the background.

Marrickville Council has given notification that it intends to remove a Jacaranda (Jacaranda mimosifolia) outside 12 Cardigan Street Stanmore.

Council gives the following reasons for removal –

  • “Poor structural condition.
  • Lower trunk decay extends into the tree’s root crown.
  • The tree is causing damage to private property and the installation of a root barrier is likely to result in further reducing the condition of the tree.”

They say they will replace with another Jacaranda to be planted in the current 2014 Street Tree Planting Program.

The deadline for any submissions is Friday 30th May 2014. 

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