City tree management programs gaining ground

BAGUIO CITY – The tree management and improvement program of the city government is gaining ground with a total of 30 trees rescued now in Burnham and other parks.

City environment and parks management officer CordeliaLacsamana said the salvaged trees underwent tree surgery performed by CEPMO foresters and partners from other agencies including the Green Core Society.

The program began in 2009 aims to rehabilitate trees damaged by typhoons and manage those infected by pests as part of the city’s efforts to protect the trees and to maintain the city’s green environs.

Under the program, trees damaged by pests will undergo tree surgery while those severely damaged or with center rot will have to undergo sanitation cutting to avoid infecting other trees or posing danger to lives and properties.

The management program also covers tree rejuvenation through trimming and pruning as what was done recently to trees at the Rizal Park which elicited negative reactions from some residents.

Lacsamana said that CEPMO does not employ pruning and trimming indiscriminately. On the contrary, pruning is done only to trees that show viability to regrow or rejuvenate and this is done in consultation with experts.

“Some trees, as they age, have difficulty to grow new leaves and branches. That is when you can do trimming and pruning to allow them to rebloom,” she said.

Lacsamana admitted no definite solution has been found to arrest tree pestsips and dendroctunos that caused increased morbidity among pine trees in the city but continuous studies are being done in coordination with experts from Benguet State University (BSU), the Environment Research Development Bureau of the Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and UP Los Banos.

As to the tree replacement program of the city, Lacsamana said the city continues to comply with the requirement of Nat’l Greening Program for each employee to plant ten trees annually in available open public spaces.

The city also continues to partner with private institutions and establishments both local and foreign to boost the tree planting program.

In Burnham Park, replacement of the trees felled by typhoons in the past years has also been made a priority.

An area in the park has been identified as planting site for the tree replacement requirement of the city where applicants for occupancy permits are required to plant ten trees before having their applications approved.

A friendship tree park has also been established in another area of the park where local universities forge alliance with counterparts in other countries through the symbolic planting of trees.

University of the Cordilleras planted their friendship tree with Vietnam, South Korea and China which was made more significant when the representatives used water from their own countries to soak the newly planted saplings.

Saint Louis University had theirs planted with University of Merced in California.
Other areas in the park are also being identified for regreening./Aileen P. Refuerzo


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