Taking a leaf from record books
By HELEN JACK
TREES were planted all over the Northern Rivers yesterday as part of Planet Ark's National Tree Day.
And in an effort to help exceed the record 1.6 million trees planted across Australia last year, Duck Creek Land Care group was out in force behind Alstonville's cemetery with 100 rainforest figs and other native tree varieties.
Duck Creek Land Care coordinator Caroline Woodhead said they had invited the whole community to come and help.
"School children from St Joseph's Primary School, Alstonville High School and Alstonville Primary School came to help on Friday," she said.
"They helped with about 100 trees at the perimeter of the Duck Creek Remnant Rainforest behind the cemetery." They were among the 400 trees donated by Ballina Shire Council for the event.
Yesterday, Duck Creek Land Carers and community members were preparing to plant the trees at the perimeter of the cemetery leading into the rainforest.
"The rainforest is part of our catchment and a good example of council and the community working together to regenerate the rainforest," she said.
National Tree Day celebrations also happened in dunes near the Brunswick Heads Surf Club where 300 trees were planted in conjunction with Brunswick Heads Dunecare, Byron Shire Council and Brunswick Valley Landcare.
They were planted where Byron Shire Council removed bitou bush weed with the aim to prevent new weeds growing back as well as stabilising and beautifying the dunes.
Byron Shire Council biodiversity extension officer Wendy Neilan said the tree plantings were a great way for people to have fun with their families, make new friends and help restore the environment.
"Last year we revegetated part of the banks of Mullumbimby Creek and now the trees are flourishing and provide improved habitat for local fauna, including fish living in the creek."
Ms Neilan said this year's plantings would build on revegetation works done by Brunswick Heads Dunecare volunteers.
A Planet Ark spokesman said its National Tree Day was Australia's biggest community tree-planting event.
Since it started 11 years ago more than 10.5 million native trees and shrubs have been planted.
"Over 250,000 school children were involved in last year's event, but that was expected to be beaten this year," he said.
"Tree Day shows children how easy and what fun it is to help our environment.
"The planting of these local native trees helps provide food and shelter for Australia's wildlife.
"Planting trees also helps to increase native biodiversity and to a big degree combats habitat loss that threatens much of Australia's unique wildlife.