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City celebrates Arbor Month with tree planting at Olienhout Arboretum<p>​The Olienhout Arboretum (also known as Frikkie Knoetze Arboretum) is an important eco-corridor interlinking the open space system with Tygerberg Nature reserve.</p><div>The Arboretum is part of various large parks in the metropole. From the higher section of the park, visitors can see the beautiful view of Table Mountain in the distance. The park boasts numerous attractions such as footpaths, boardwalks, a wetland, numerous benches, a natural spring and a large pond. <br></div><div><br></div><div>Importantly, the Arboretum is home to an abundance of birdlife. It also offers good soil and climatic conditions which makes  it very suitable for tree planting. </div><div><br></div><div>In commemoration of national Arbor Month, the Recreation and Parks Department planted  30 trees made up of a variety of species in the park, including the tree of the year Dais cotinifolia. </div><div><br></div><div>‘September is the time of the year when we can celebrate the importance of trees and the role they play in our everyday lives. The effect of urbanisation on the environment can be counteracted if we plant more trees and have a plan to sustain them. Trees improve our quality of life by providing oxygen, food, shade and can be cultivated for use in medicine and wood,’  said the Mayoral Committee Member for Community Service and Health, Councillor Patricia Van der Ross.</div><div><br></div><div>Retiree, Thys Lotter from the local ratepayers association, took the initiative to demonstrate just how valuable the trees at the Arboretum are. In partnership with CPUT lecturer Gordon Dreyer, they undertook the task of identifying and labelling recognised trees of significance by the National Forests Act, which are growing at Olienhout Arboretum. They even recycled plastic ice cream containers to use as labels, which proved to be ideal because of their flexibility, strong impact resistance and low risk of being stolen.</div><div><br></div><div>Students from CPUT were able to use the park as an outdoor classroom, to learn about plant and tree species. Their learning experience was greatly enriched by Mr Lotter’s community-driven efforts.</div><div><br></div><div>The park is also well-known and  popular for family and wedding pictures, runners, dog walkers, quiet picnics and family fun. </div><div><br></div><div>‘Tree planting and caring for our trees and parks is important and the City distributed more than 2 000 trees since April this year. As residents, we are privileged to have so many parks and public open spaces which we can visit to relax, exercise or learn more about our biodiversity and ecosystems. By planting a tree, we not only invest in nature but also create future opportunities for residents to enjoy the many benefits of trees in an urban environment. With summer approaching I would like to invite residents to visit our parks and especially the Olienhout Arboretum to enjoy a day in the outdoors – thank you to all the role players who made the tree planting event such a success,’ added Councillor Patricia Van der Ross.</div><div><br></div><div>The Arboretum is a success story in demonstrating how residents and the City can partner to bring the best out of community parks. There is an active ‘Friends Group’ that assists the Recreation and Parks Department which guides the maintenance and management of the park.</div><div><br></div><div><br></div><div>End<br></div><p><br></p>2022-09-21T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#f6754142-3f82-4ccd-8361-47a7b733f2c5;L0|#0f6754142-3f82-4ccd-8361-47a7b733f2c5|park;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb10

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