Joined Up Tree Planting

Four organisations ranging from a small green action group to Manchester City Council are working together to increase the number of trees in an inner city area of Manchester. Birchfields Green Action Group has been growing trees from seeds on their tree nursery in Rusholme for a few years. Hamilton Road Area Community Association in Longsight has been trying to fulfil the wishes of local people to have more trees in their area. Red Rose Forest has a new project called Green Streets, which aims to bring greenery to the streets of Manchester and Trafford. Ben Greenaway is Manchester City Council Oper-ational Services Department arboriculturalist, and part of his job is to organise planting suitable trees in appropriate locations on the streets of Manchester.

By working together, they have arranged to plant 17 new street trees in the Hamilton Road area, two of which were grown on the Green Action Group's tree nursery. One of these was a seedling donated by a local resident which had self-seeded at her workplace. This was grown on by BGAG to be big enough to plant on a street. When Green Streets and HRACA got together to organise a pilot project in the Hamilton Road area, they found they were one tree short. So the Green Action Group provided the missing tree. The Community Association's role is to liaise with residents to ensure that trees get planted where people want them. In addition HRACA encourages residents to take part in the actual planting and maintenance of the trees. Red Rose coordinates the funding and liaises with Ben Greenaway to get approval for the location of the trees in suitable places and ensure that the species planted are appropriate. Red Rose Forest is also hoping to provide some training for residents in maintaining trees.

It is planned to plant the second tree from the tree nursery on a vacant site in memory of a community activist who died aged 95. She had campaigned against the slum clearance proposals in the Hamilton Road area in the 70s and was a founder member of two local housing co-ops as well as the Slade Lane Neighbour-hood Centre. The two co-ops will be organising this memorial planting once the Green Streets project manage to obtain consent from the council for the planting.

HRACA (0161 225 2913, hraca@freeuk.com)


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