Calls for community to back Wild Portishead’s new environmental tree-planting initiative

PUBLISHED: 06:58 31 August 2019

Liam Fox and naturalist Chris Sperring discussing the Wild Portishead project. Picture: Liam Fox Twitter

Liam Fox and naturalist Chris Sperring discussing the Wild Portishead project. Picture: Liam Fox Twitter

Liam Fox Twitter

‘Be a part of Portishead’s greener future’ is the message from campaigners urging people to promote nature in the town.

Wild Portishead is calling for people to join its efforts to support wildlife and greenery.

The group, which has the backing of Portishead Town Council, was formed earlier this year amid growing global concern for the environment - and members hope their efforts at a local level can make a difference.

Wild Portishead's first initiative will be planting trees, using seeds and saplings from around the town.

A spokesman said: "We will be sourcing native trees for planting around our town, but we aren't going to spend thousands of pounds doing this, we are going to collect seeds and saplings that have been produced here and relocate them to our chosen areas.

"Mature trees can produce many hundreds of offspring, many of which will try to grow underneath the parent trees and most will be doomed to failure.

"Some are important to replace the parent tree when it eventually dies, but this can take hundreds of years, so most will struggle to survive in the shadows and never get the chance to reach their potential."

The group believes the project will reap multiple benefits.

Its spokesman added: "We have consulted with professional foresters who agree that this idea has real merit, not only to save money, but to reduce the chances of bringing in disease by buying trees from other areas, as well as saving on tree miles.

"Local people can grow the seeds and saplings in their gardens and really be a part of our towns greener future."

Wild Portishead hopes to start the project next month, with more details to be confirmed soon.

The spokesman added: "Our first event is a tree walk in Eastwood Portishead were we will look at and select species of trees for the dual purpose of what they do for people and wildlife.

"For those that can't identify trees, we will help with this and give more information about the individual species.

"Obviously this process is much slower than buying in trees that are ready to go, and we may have to do this in the future but for now we will try this as a public experiment."

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