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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.

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The new children's playground with barbecue area.

The new children’s playground with barbecue area.

The new moving exercise equipment area.

The new moving exercise equipment area.

The new World War II Memorial

The new World War II Memorial

New path and garden

New path and garden

Swale in Marrickville Park

New swale in Marrickville Park with new concrete paths.

We went to have a look at Marrickville Park today.  Inner West Council has recently finished an upgrade of this historic park.  It looks good, though there is a lot of concrete where there was once grass.   I concede that concrete paths do improve accessibility, so now there are more paths for people to walk & this is probably a good thing.

The south entrance off Livingstone Road takes you to a new exercise area with moving equipment.  It is good to see that Marrickville is getting the same quality of equipment as other areas of the old Marrickville municipality.    The ground surface is made of what appears to be synthetic material that is super soft & bouncy.

I noticed one of the two new drinking fountains has a bowl that allows both dogs & birds to access fresh water, which is wonderful.  I’ve been noticing these as a norm in many parks, but not at the southern suburbs of the old Marrickville municipality.  It is a shame that both bubblers don’t have this extra water bowl, but having one is a great improvement.    Both bubblers have drainage at the base to take water away instead of creating muddy puddles.

Beside the exercise area is a large swale, which I presume will collect any rainwater & allow it to soak into the ground purifying it of pollutants before it reaches the Cooks River.  I love swales & think the more we have the better.

This swale evolves into a long wide garden area that travels all the way to the original path lined with historic palm trees.  The garden area is covered with geotextile to stop the weeds & keep in moisture.  It has been planted out with bottle brush, pig face, native grasses & 8 new advanced-sized Melaleuca trees.  These trees will provide food for the wildlife.  They look great now, but when mature they will look fantastic, as these trees generally develop beautiful canopies when they do not have to suffer severe pruning for power lines.

There is new lighting.  They look good, are unobtrusive & have been placed on the opposite side of the path & of newly planted trees, which means that trees will not need to be pruned to accommodate the lights.

I was pleased to see that all the trees have had the grass removed from around their trunk & this area mulched.  This is much better for the trees.  It protects them from mower & whipper-snipper damage & also keeps the ground moist & cool for the roots.  It is standard practice these days, so it is great to see our trees get this treatment, especially the historic trees.  I thank Council for this.

At intervals along the new pathway are metal circles engraved with a local sports person’s name & their sport.  This is a nice way to commemorate local sporting greats without making it look like a cemetery, as I have seen elsewhere.

A new war memorial has been created to remember those residents of Marrickville, Newtown, St Peters, Petersham & Camperdown who died in World War II.    The garden bed has been planted with Rosemary.

Next to the new children’s playground is the new barbeque area.  Two wooden tables with wooden bench seats have been placed next to the electric barbeque & there are garbage bins close by.  Two new trees have been planted to eventually provide natural shade.  I suspect this may be a popular place on summer evenings.

The children’s playground is exciting.  Even I had a bounce on one of the three in-ground trampolines.  The surface area here is as soft as around the exercise equipment.  The playground is covered by two shade cloths, while new trees have been planted that will eventually create natural shade.   There is climbing equipment, a tunnel slide, swings of different kinds, benches to sit on & a cubby house.

It looks fun & the kids that were there were obviously enjoying themselves.  It appears we have passed the era of sad-looking playgrounds.  This playground is an entertainment centre in itself.  Here children have all kinds of opportunities to exercise & learn new skills while enjoying themselves.  The adults also have comfortable places to sit.

From the central path with the palm trees to the Croquet Club are 26 new trees.  That is a boon!   One species is the Oriental Plane (Platanus orientalis) – a deciduous tree native to south eastern Europe to west Asia.  It is a fast growing tree with horizontal branching that can grow to 20-30 metres tall.   Fossil specimens of this tree from over 100 million years ago in the earlier Cretaceous period have been found.

Another is Pin oak (Quercus palustris) – a deciduous tree native to the USA & Canada. Can grow to 15-metres with a canopy spread of around 8-metres. It develops deep bronze to red leaves in autumn.  The Little corellas like to eat the small acorns, so even though not native to Australia, it does provide food for wildlife.  A fig tree has been planted & also a couple of Firewheel trees, which is wonderful.

A new white picket fence (in keeping with tradition) has been erected around the oval & it looks nice.

I have two areas of concern.  One is that a mature Brushbox tree that was near the entrance on the south side off Livingstone Road died 2-3 years ago & unfortunately was not replaced by Council.  The tree was there for decades.  Now there is a triangle of concrete pathways with nothing but grass & one bench.  There is lots of space to replace this tree without taking away from any of the new activities or plantings here.  The space looks empty to my mind & I would like to see this tree replaced to fill what is now a visual hole.

The second issue that concerns me is Council’s plan not to replace any of the Brushbox trees that are growing on the hill surrounding half of the oval.  This appears to be a matter of personal taste with the designer because it does not make sense to me.   Trees have been growing here successfully for many decades, perhaps 80-100 years.  Growing on raised ground means that these trees are higher than usual & therefore more visible.  To me this is a good thing in a suburb where roofs are generally more visible than trees.

Of major importance though, is people sit under these trees to watch the games.  They also sit in the shade to have picnics, read books or just chill.  There are 10 mature Brushbox trees here & while we were walking around, 5 of the trees had people sitting or lying underneath them.  Where else are you going to do this in the shade if these trees go?    People are unlikely to place a blanket under the lovely Brushbox trees growing next to busy Livingstone Road & Frazier Street because sitting or lying next to traffic is not conducive to feeling relaxed.

From memory all but one of the new trees are planted next to the pathway or next to the children’s playground.  The other 8 new trees are planted inside a garden area, again next to the path.  My bet is people won’t want to lay a blanket next to a path.  It is not the same as the area on the hill under those beautiful trees.   Shade was much needed this afternoon as it is a hot day.

For Council not to replace trees at this location removes not only beauty, but also a place for people to sit safely in the shade to watch games or to relax.  We need Council to plant trees wherever there is an opportunity, not decide not to replace trees where they have historically been.

I would like Council to replace these trees as they die or need to be removed & replace them with the same species. Brushbox are good for wildlife & they have a most beautiful canopy, especially from beneath.  It would be nice to carry on some of the historical plantings into the next hundred years for people to enjoy like we have.

Finally, I like that the rose garden has been retained.  It is one of those old worldly characteristics that gives this park its unique character.

Council have done good work in this upgrade.  The park has become popular for exercise groups, so the moving exercise equipment will be appreciated.  New trees & gardens are always wonderful & the children’s playground is a big improvement on what was there before.  All up, it looks great.

A Brushbox tree stood here for decades.  When it was removed it was not replaced leaving a gaping hole.  I think this area would be much improved if the tree was replaced with the same species.

A Brushbox tree stood here for decades. When it was removed it was not replaced leaving a gaping hole. I think this area would be much improved if the tree was replaced with the same species to match the row of Brushbox trees on the right.

People making use of the shade provided by the trees on the hill.  Trees are needed and appropriate in this area.

People making use of the shade provided by the trees on the hill. Trees are needed and appropriate in this area.  Note that no-one is sitting in the sun.

Three groups of people under three trees on this hill.  It is unthinkable that these trees will not be replaced when they die or need to be removed.

Three groups of people under three trees on this hill. It is unthinkable that these trees will not be replaced when they die or need to be removed.

Spectators under another Brushbox on the hill.

Spectators under another Brushbox on the hill.

 

 

 

Four Robinia trees to be removed on the corner of Herbert and New Canterbury Road Dulwich Hill. By my observations, this is a popular place for people.

Four Robinia trees (and perhaps one power pole) to be removed on the corner of Herbert and New Canterbury Road Dulwich Hill. By my observations, this is a popular meeting place for people who were seeking the shade on this warm winter’s day.

Inner West Council (nee Marrickville) have given notification that they intend to remove 5 x Robinia (Robinia pseudoacacia) trees outside 366 New Canterbury Road Dulwich Hill

Council gives the following reason for removal –

  • “Trees to be removed as part of an upgrade project. They are in poor condition & at the end of their useful life.”

They say the trees will be replaced with “super advanced 400L container size tree Liriodendron tulipifera installed in structural soil to provide optimal soil volumes.”

I can have a guess at what “structural soil” & “optimal soil volumes” mean, but why not write the reason in plain English so that everyone in the community can understand?  Industry jargon always isolates & alienates those not in the industry & this applies to all industries.  The target audience is the community, not other arborists & town planners.

Of importance is our urban forest will not be increasing fast when five trees are removed to be replaced with only one tree.

The Liriodendron tulipifera is a deciduous tree native to North America.  It produces green/yellow flowers in spring & yellow autumn color before the leaves are dropped.  It grows in an upright form & can reach 20-metres in 10-15 years.   Liriodendron tulipifera are planted along the Marrickville Road shopping strip.

I went to have a look & could only see four Robinia trees in this location.  One was a power pole with a streetlight, so easily mistaken I suppose. Maybe the pole will be removed as well.

I wanted to call this post ‘A lost opportunity.’

In 2015 Marrickville Council did research to garner information about the urban heat island effect & the impact of heatwaves in Dulwich Hill.  They also created a Thermal Map, which showed the hot areas in Dulwich Hill.

Not only was New Canterbury Road nominated as ‘hot spot’ by the community, but the thermal map showed that this perception was indeed correct.  The corner of Herbert Street & New Canterbury Road is right up there in terms of excessive heat at between 32.9 – 36.8 degrees – the maximum heat shown in the thermal map.

The same corner was also in the second highest area of a study of the ‘population vulnerable to heat stress.’

So knowing that this location is really hot & is in an area of population deemed vulnerable to heat stress, Council only plans to plant one tree?  Seriously!

The location at corner of Herbert Street & New Canterbury Road has an unusually large streetscape space.  It’s not often Council gets an opportunity to work in public street space that is around 5 x 20 metres.  The corner juts out in a wide swoop.  Currently it is a wide space of concrete with the four trees, one pole & two bench seats & still leaving plenty of room that is open-air concrete.

To plant only one tree is a missed opportunity for Council to create something lovely to not only beautify the streetscape, but to also lower the heat island effect here.

I had difficulty taking photos of the trees that did not include people because they kept rushing into the space to sit on the seats or to stand in the shade.  At one stage there were fifteen people under the trees.  This shows that this is a popular meeting space for the community – another reason why more than one tree should be the upgrade project’s target.

A busy café is on this corner.  People buy something from the café & take it outside.  The café itself, does not seem to get relief from the afternoon sun.  In Sydney winter really only started yesterday after a summer-like autumn that broke all previous temperature records.  It was cold today, but still hot enough outside for people to be actively seeking shade.

This idea that we need deciduous trees for the winter months belongs to the pre-climate change past. Even the shops are despairing because of record low sales of winter clothing.

In my opinion there is room for five decent sized trees speed spread out over this site, plus landscaping works that incorporate the current seating.  Anything less means that Council knows the area is hot, but is not willing to take steps to mitigate the heat & make it an attractive & useful space for the community.   Such a shame.

The deadline for submissions is Monday 1st June 2016.

Showing the corner from Herbert Street

Showing the corner from Herbert Street.  This is a large space and much good can be done with it to make it a beautiful and useful space for the community.

Showing the corner from New Canterbury Road. Again you can see how wide this section is.

Showing the corner from New Canterbury Road. Again you can see how wide this section is.

Looking behind and up New Canterbury Road. No street trees, so the opportunity for trees on the corner becomes even more visually obvious.

Looking behind and up New Canterbury Road. No street trees, so the opportunity for trees on the corner becomes even more visually obvious.

 

Waiting for final removal.

Waiting for final removal.

Marrickville Council has given notice of their intention to remove a Small-Leafed Peppermint (Eucalyptus nicholii) outside 17 Eltham Street Dulwich Hill.

They give the following reasons for removal –

  • “Major branch failure during high winds resulting in approx. 40% loss of canopy leaving the tree unstable.
  • The tree in its present state poses an unacceptable level of risk to the public & property.”

Council says they will replace with a Chinese Pistachio (Pistacia chinensis) in the current 2015 Street Tree Planting Program.

The Chinese pistachio is native to China, Taiwan & the Philippines.  It is fast-growing, deciduous & puts on a red display in autumn. It reaches a height of between 6-10 metres.  Female trees produce berries that are attractive to birds.

The Queensland Government website says, – “Chinese pistachio (Pistacia chinensis) is regarded as an environmental weed in New south Wales & the ACT, & is also a potential environmental weed or “sleeper weed”  in other parts of southern Australia.”   See – http://bit.ly/190nZHG

It is beyond my understanding why Marrickville Council chooses to plant risky non-native trees when there are so many suitable Australian native trees.

The deadline for submissions is Friday 8th May 2015.

It's hard to see, but the red dot shows the location of the new 2-metre tree.

It’s hard to see, but the red dot shows the location of the new 2-metre tree.  You can see the stakes on either side.

Bravo to the Tempe Bus Depot who replaced the magnificent Eucalypt  that died recently. It looks to be another native gum. I hope this tree does well & lives a long & healthy life.

It will be great to have another gorgeous tree break up the skyline here & being so close to the Princes Highway, will benefit us all by adding beauty & cleaning the air.  Thank you Tempe Bus Depot.

From this...

From this…

To this….

To this….

Leaving this...

Leaving this…

To this.

To this.

And finally to this.  I wonder why it was necessary in the first place.

And finally to this. I wonder why it was necessary in the first place.

On 10th April 2014 I posted about the ruination of a very nice & quite different street tree that was a feature the corner of Swain Street & Burrows Avenue Sydenham.  See – http://bit.ly/1hjsbUq   The tree was left unviable after pruning for power lines & was removed.

I was pleased to see that Marrickville Council planted a new tree in this location sometime in the last week.  It looks like a Banksia serrata, which is a great tree, especially for wildlife.

The red arrow points to the tree removal September 2013.  The tree that has had all its branches removed is the magnificent tree in the centre.

The red arrow points to a mature tree removed in September 2013 – that tree has not been replaced yet.  The tree that is the subject of this post is the magnificent Sydney Blue gum in the centre.

Here is the Sydney Blue gum last Thursday.

Here is the Sydney Blue gum last Thursday.  As you can see, this has been a tremendous loss.  

Last week Marrickville Council removed all the branches of a Sydney Blue Gum (Eucalyptus saligna) in McNeilly Park Marrickville.

They gave post-notification giving the following reasons for removing all the branches –

  • “Major branch failure resulting in a large limb falling on playground area.
  • The branch failure left the tree in an unstable condition & it had to be removed as an emergency.
  • The tree had a history of branch drop with at least 4 major branches falling over the period of 2 years.
  • Last year council did some selective pruning to try & reduce the risk of limb failure, but as this recent event shows the tree was just too much of a risk to the public.
  • The structure that has been left will be turned into a habitat tree-arborists will be creating habitat boxes & holes in the trunks over the next few days.”

Council says they will replace this tree with a super advanced native tree species,” but not when this will happen. Hopefully it won’t be a tree species known for dropping limbs, as it is right next to a playground.  The tree removed in September 2013 has not yet been replaced.

I was cycling through McNeilly Park last Friday & stopped to take photos.  By good fortune Council’s Biodiversity Officer was there, so I asked a few questions.

All the upper branches have been ring-barked to attempt to prevent epicormic growth. Council expects that they will need to come regularly to remove new branch growth because the tree is still alive. An Arborist friend tells me that it may take years for this tree to die.

There will be 2-3 holes made for birds, such as parrots. A microbat box will also be attached to the tree.

A garden will be created beneath the tree.  I also heard that the garden area alongside the railway line fence is to be gradually filled with plants. I am very happy about this.

The branches removed from the tree are being hollowed out, to be laid on the ground in the garden area beside the railway line, creating homes for reptiles & other wildlife. Eventually this wood will decay & provide nutrients to the soil. I shall write of the benefits of dead wood in a later post.

Marrickville Council intends to use this ‘habitat tree’ as a teaching tool on how to create hollows & habitat boxes to other Councils & Arborists.

The loss of this tree is very unfortunate as we have very few Sydney Blue gums & they are magnificent trees. It was without doubt the most significant tree in Mc Neilly Park. Right now it looks like a scar on the landscape, but this may change once there is a garden beneath it & we are used to its presence.

This tree will also offer an education opportunity for school students, as well as the general community.

I hope that another Sydney Blue gum can be planted in Mc Neilly Park, perhaps closer to the railway line fence, so the community & the wildlife get the benefit of such a lovely tree, but with a much reduced risk of the tree needing to be removed if it is in an area where few or no people go.  I’d also like another shade-producing tree planted next to the playground – a species that doesn’t routinely drop limbs, as this was a very popular spot for people to gather.  There is plenty of room in this park for more trees.

I think it is great that Council has retained this tree for wildlife.  Dead trees & hollows are a natural part of the ecosystem, but are rare as hen’s teeth in Marrickville LGA.  This relatively recent change in tree management will hopefully mean that public trees that cannot remain for various reasons won’t automatically be put through the wood-chipping machine.

It’s a sad loss with what must be a good outcome.  I hope the wildlife use it.

 

I was told this was White Rot & the cause of the branch fall.

I was told this was White Rot & the cause of the branch fall.

Showing a hole made for birds.

Showing a hole made for birds.  There are two of these.

The poor tree from the bottom.  Another hole may be made where there is already a hollow being formed in the trunk.

What is left of this poor tree. Another hole may be made where there is already a natural hollow forming in the trunk.

 

Marrickville Council's map of tree removal & other works at Mahoney Reserve.  Click for a larger image.

Marrickville Council’s map of tree removal & other works at Mahoney Reserve. Click for a larger image.

These six Poplars are to be removed.  It's autumn so they are not looking their best after losing most of their leaves.

These six Poplars are to be removed. It’s autumn so they are not looking their best after losing most of their leaves.  They are much taller than the other trees.

Marrickville Council has given notice that they intend to remove an unspecified number of trees from Mahoney Reserve on the river at Marrickville South. I counted 23 trees to be removed, however, I could have missed a tree or two because the only information Council provided is orange dots on a downloadable map.

None of the trees in the park have Notification of Removal signs on them, so it is highly likely that most of the community will not be aware of the tree removal until after it happens.

If 23 trees is correct, then Council is planting only 8 trees to replace this loss. I don’t know how our urban forest will ever expand given this negative ratio of removal & replacement.  This park has plenty of room for more trees.

I am not surprised that so many trees are to be removed. I first wrote about the trees of Mahoney Reserve back in January 2011. See – http://bit.ly/1cOo9B6. Even then I could tell that the trees in this park were in trouble. Evidence of boring insects was visible for a phenomenal number of trees.

I wrote, One by one we looked at the trees along the Wharf Road side of Mahoney Reserve. It was difficult to find a tree that wasn’t showing borer holes & rot.  Many had ant infestations as well.”

This tree & another will be pruned to install stag ferns

This tree & another will be pruned to install stag ferns

The Marrickville section of the Cooks River is notable because someone in Council had the foresight to plant Poplars around 40-45 years ago. I think the trees are Populus deltoids (Cottonwood), but don’t quote me.  These trees are well suited to riparian zones & although not native, provide food & habitat for a wide range of wildlife. Their roots prevent bank erosion & clean contaminated soil, groundwater & stormwater.  They are great for windbreaks too, making them a sensible choice along the river, which can get very windy.

The Poplar trees along the Cooks River in Marrickville are much-loved by the community because of their significant beauty, their seasonal interaction with the environment & their sheer size. We really do not have many trees around with huge girths & of such height.

Their leaves also sound fabulous when there is a breeze & provide a great crunch under foot when they have fallen.  They also provide a wonderful dappled shade in Steel Park, allowing people to sit almost anywhere out of the sun, instead of huddling near a tree trunk.  These are also landmark trees, as they are visible from many areas on both sides of the river.

Six mature Poplars were removed from Mahoney Reserve in late 2010.  I was told it was because they died.  I suspect their death was due to boring insects, as there was ample evidence of attack on their trunks.  Council chopped back their branches & left the trunks in situ for habitat, but later they were deemed dangerous & removed in 2012.  These six trees were part of an impressive avenue of 21 Poplars in Mahoney Reserve. They were approximately 22-26 metres tall.

In this round of tree removal, six more mature Poplars are to be removed.  This will leave only six Poplars along the river & three along Illawarra Road side of the park of the original 21 trees.

Marrickville Council’s Recreation Study indicated that they would like to install synthetic turf in Mahoney Reserve.  My bet is the annual leaf drop of these trees will not be appreciated, so I expect these other trees will be removed in the coming years & as with the current Poplars, will not be replaced with Poplars.  This is a shame in my opinion.

The eight replacement trees to be planted are –

  • 1 x Lillypilly (Syzygium smithii formerly Acmena smithii)
  • 1 x Bangalay (Eucalyptus botryoides)
  • 1 x Red Mahogany (Eucalyptus resinifera)
  • 1 x Swamp Mahogany (Eucalyptus robusta)
  • 1 x Sydney blue gum (Eucalyptus saligna)
  • 1 x Forest red gum (Eucalyptus tereticornis)
  • 1 x Snow in Summer (Melaleuca linariifolia)
  • 1 x Prickly paperbark (Melaleuca styphelioides).  These seven species will be planted in a line where the current Poplar trees are.  Gaps will be left where the other trees are removed.
  • 1 x Moreton Bay fig (Ficus macrophylla) – to be planted at the corner of Wharf & Illawarra Roads. I am pleased that this will be a feature tree. One day it should look wonderful.

Two mature trees near the toilet block on Wharf Road will be pruned to install stag ferns. Around 75 other trees will have “canopy maintenance pruning.”  They need it.

I am glad Marrickville Council is doing work for the trees in this park, but feel sad that the Poplars will not be replaced.  In my opinion, these trees have many positive benefits & are iconic to the river at Marrickville.  There is plenty of room to plant the other eight trees, as well as replace the Poplars. There is so much visual change happening in Marrickville. It would be nice to have something beautiful offer continuity.

I did find a microbat box high in a tree, which was nice.

You can access the map of works here – https://www.marrickville.nsw.gov.au/Global/Environment/In%20your%20community/Tree%20management/H%20J%20Mahony%20Reserve_Mahoney%20Reserve%20Tree%20Management%20Plan.pdf

Submissions are due by Friday 30th May 2014.

Lastly, I have tried to put the photos of the trees to be removed in an anti-clockwise order around the park starting at the left of the clubhouse & finishing near the bus stop on Illawarra Road.  Two of the trees to be rmeoved are missing from the photos.

Small sick tree to go.

Small sick tree to go.

The red dot marks tree to be removed.

The red dot marks tree to be removed.

I thik it is this tree to be removed.

I think it is this tree to be removed.

A big one

A big one

Another

Another

Beside the golf course

Beside the golf course

Shame about this tree.

Shame about this tree.

I think it is these two

I think it is these two

Five of the six Poplars to go.

Five of the six Poplars to go.

Such a small shrubby tree. It looks like it has regrown after being chopped down.  I personally would wait until the other grew before removal because it offers refuge for small birds & spaces for animals & lizards at ground level.

Such a small shrubby tree. It looks like it has regrown after being chopped down. I personally would wait until the other grew before removal because it offers refuge for small birds & spaces for animals & lizards at ground level.

On the side side of the park to be removed

On the river side of the park

Another shrubby tree that I would leave until the others have grown.

Another shrubby tree that I would leave until the others have grown.  It offers refuge for birds.

I think it is this tree

I think it is this tree to be removed.

 

 

The red dot indicates the Fig tree that was removed yesterday

The red dot indicates the Fig tree that was removed yesterday

Gone.  A pair of Magpies surveyed the damage & possibly the loss of their home.  At least there are other trees in the park for them to move to, not like the thousands of birds who are about to lose their homes when all the trees are removed at Marrickville Town Hall.   Photo by Kiki Isidorou with thanks.

Gone. A pair of Magpies surveyed the damage & possibly the loss of their home. At least there are other trees in the park for them to move to, not like the thousands of birds who are about to lose their homes when all the trees are removed at Marrickville Town Hall.                                         Photo by Kiki Isidorou with thanks.

Yesterday the beautiful Port Jackson Fig at the southern entrance of Enmore Park was chopped down marking the end of the planned removal of 15 trees in Enmore Park & also an important part of Marrickville’s history.

Council says they replaced these trees with –

  • Port Jackson Fig (Fifcus rubiginose) x 3 trees.
  • Moreton Bay Fig (Ficus macrophylla) x 2 trees.
  • Pin Oak (Quercus palustris) x 2 trees
  • Smooth-bark Kauri (Agathis robusta) x 3 trees
  • Chinese Elm (Ulmus Parvifolia ‘Todd’) x 3 trees
  • Black Booyong (Argyrodendron actinophyllum) x 2 trees
  • Jacaranda (Jacaranda mimisifolia) x 1 tree

Marrickville Council left the following comment on Facebook.  I have not edited it.  –

“It pained us to have to remove this tree, but unfortunately it just could not be saved.

The tree (a Port Jackson Fig) had major internal decay which was identified by a ‘resitograph’ test, along with a few other issues. Council explored alternative options to removal which included the use of a restraint system (ie a specially designed cable system to help support it), this option however was not supported by several independent arborist engaged by council and was recommended for removal based on the unacceptable level of risk to the public.

The tree will be replaced in few months with a hand picked super advanced (500l container size) fig tree if  the same species.”

Sad photo & the presence of the Magpies makes it all the more poignant.  Photo by Kiki Isidorou with many thanks.

Sad photo & the presence of the Magpies makes it all the more poignant.       Photo by Kiki Isidorou with many thanks.

The tree had vigorous growth & was covered in fruit.

The tree had vigorous growth & was covered in fruit.

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 – http://bit.ly/1kNqIb9

You can read more about Marrickville Council’s plans for Cavendish Street here  – https://www.marrickville.nsw.gov.au/Documents/Cavendish%20Notification%20Letter.pdf

The deadline for submissions is Friday 21st February 2014.

The plans for Cavendish Street

The plans for Cavendish Street.  Click to enlarge.

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