Hornsby Shire celebrates planting 30,000 trees in under two years!

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National Tree Day planting

Dubbed ‘The Bushland Shire’, it is already renowned as one of greenest places in Australia.

Bolstering that reputation, the citizens of Hornsby Shire on Sydney’s upper north shore are now celebrating planting the 30,000th tree to go into their soil in less than two years!

The extraordinary tree-planting milestone was passed as Hornsby Shire Council announced the creation of a unique Eucalyptus Arboretum and a delightful new ‘Children’s Forest’ discovery space to be added to its majestic 55-hectare Fagan Park at Galston.

The Eucalyptus Arboretum will be a permanent sanctuary for all 100 species of Eucalypts in the Sydney Bioregion.

“The arboretum will be the only place in New South Wales where all our magnificent Eucalypts can be seen and enjoyed by us and as our legacy to future generations,” Hornsby Shire Mayor, Philip Ruddock said.

“Hornsby Shire’s new arboretum and our exciting new Children’s Forest will allow people of all ages to get up close with the trees, including unique species found only in Hornsby Shire.”

The Children’s Forest, too, is designed to inspire, excite and educate youngsters with informal spaces for discovery, a tree-house to clamber on, adventure trails, an outdoor classroom and plenty of informative signage. This will be progressively delivered over future years.

“Council’s ongoing project to plant trees throughout Hornsby Shire, to both maintain and enhance our incomparable tree canopy, is just one reason why we enjoy the title ‘The Bushland Shire‘,” Mayor Ruddock said.

“This latest remarkable achievement, planting 30,000 trees in so short a time and during the height of the COVID crisis, bushfires and floods, could not possibly have been achieved without the selfless support of the 2,280 community volunteers who helped us plant them.

“Trees, including native trees, are essential to the preservation of the Shire’s unique natural habitat including the many animals and other plant species that depend on our trees. Also, tree planting is at the forefront of efforts to make our places cooler and more liveable.”

The planting of the 30,000th tree holds special personal significance for Mayor Ruddock.

The Mayor’s father, Max Ruddock who served on Hornsby Shire Council before him, set up the first Tree Preservation Order for Hornsby Shire in the 1960s.

“I’m sure my father would be delighted to see how enthusiastically the Hornsby Shire community and my fellow Councillors have embraced a vision for the Shire that was established nearly sixty years ago.

“The focus then as now was to green our Shire with trees which bring life and colour to our neighbourhoods.”

Mayor Ruddock expressed his appreciation to the NSW Government for assisting Council’s street tree-planting program, with funding support under the Premier’s ‘Priority Greening our City Grant Program’.