In recognition and celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Year, a Community Tree Planting event was held at Heartlands Park on Sunday 16th January 2022.
It’s never been more important to plant trees for the future, and the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative is an opportunity to bring the nation together to celebrate HM’s Platinum Jubilee while making a difference to the environment. The aim is to encourage everyone to plant the right trees in the right place, at the right time, so they continue to thrive for generations to come.
Armed with spades and boundless enthusiasm, 23 volunteers met Officers from Buckingham Town Council and Buckinghamshire Council, including Buckingham’s Tree Wardens and members of the public, who all worked together to plant 250 trees!
Chair of Environment Committee for Buckingham Town Council, Cllr. Warren Whyte said, “A big thank you to all our volunteers and staff for helping with the big tree planting session last Sunday morning. The planting of over 200 trees in Heartlands Park is not only a great way for Buckingham to help contribute towards the Queens Green Canopy, but also an important part of the Town Council’s Climate Emergency Action Plan, and improving the biodiversity of our lovely parks.”
Estates Manager at Buckingham Town Council, Lee Phillips, said, “We are very lucky to have such enthusiastic volunteers who gave up their free time to come and plant trees and have donated a number of trees that people have grown themselves. Tree planting is so important because it helps to mitigate the effects of climate change, helps us to replace trees lost to ash die back and planting a mixture of native species throughout the woodland helps to increase the diversity of fauna and flora in our town’s greenspaces.”
Peter Strachan, Buckinghamshire Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Environment, said:
“As part of our commitment to tackling climate change, we will be planting over half a million trees in Buckinghamshire over the next 10 years. Planting trees is a great way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and recharge the environment with oxygen. Trees also help prevent flooding and enhance biodiversity. The trees planted in Buckingham at the weekend in partnership with Buckingham Town Council are in addition to our half million trees target, which is fantastic – as the more trees the better!
I’d encourage residents and community groups to support tree planting as part of the Bucks Tree Mission – a shared mission to promote more space for nature to grow and thrive, as well as improving health and well-being for everyone. In addition, trees planted during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Year of 2022 are even more special as they form part of the Queen’s Green Canopy.”
A small parcel of woodland overlooking the bowl in Heartlands Park was planted with a row of Black Poplar trees (Populus nigra betulifolia) and a mixture of smaller native tree species. The black poplar was once a common tree in Britain’s landscape, used for crafting cart wheels and wagon bottoms, but the species is now in decline. Black Poplar are dioecious, meaning male and female flowers are found on separate trees. Flowers are called catkins (male catkins are red and female catkins are yellow-green) and are pollinated by the wind. The female specimens are increasingly hard to procure, but fortunately, we were gifted two rare, which means Buckingham’s Black Poplars can pollinate for generations to come.
Did you know?
Only around 7,000 wild black poplars now grow in Britain and of these, only 600 are female trees. Folklore tells that fallen red male catkins are Devil’s fingers, and bring bad luck if picked up.
You can find out more about the Queen’s Green Canopy Project at https://queensgreencanopy.org/