Thursday, October 07, 2004

'Knives out' for Hyde Park fig trees

Several old fig trees in Hyde Park are to be removed by Council because they are diseased, according to a report on 702 radio this morning.

Tests done by Council's arborist and two independent arborists show that three separate diseases have weakened the trees which are an imminent danger of falling. Up to 75% of the roots have been turned to pulp.

In July a mature fig fell across the main avenue, one of several over the past year.

Greens councillor Chris Harris said the situation was totally different to that of the figs recently removed in the Domain by the Botanic Gardens Trust because those trees had turned out not to be diseased, despite repeated assertions to that effect from the Gardens and the state government.

An exhibition on the Domain and that tree-felling is running now at Town Hall, featuring photos by local Glenn Lockitch.

The Hyde Park figs will not be replaced immediately as the neighbouring fullgrown trees starve the younger trees of nutrients and light, and the soil is contaminated by the diseases, said Council's arborist.

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