Friday, June 10, 2016

Trees in medians

It's a narrow median in a busy road so you plant small, narrow trees like these Native Franjipani*, right?


Because what you end up with is


A hedge-on-a-stick tree that's constantly being pruned by passing trucks and buses.

What you need to do is the counter-intuitive thing and plant a large-growing tree** so that you end up with


A tree that forms a canopy above the traffic.

And the asphalt gets shaded.

And the streetscape looks in balance.

And everyone says what a jolly good fellow you are.

The real tragedy of going with small, narrow trees is that it takes ten years before everyone realises it was a mistake and in that time you could have something decent well underway. "Opportunity cost" the economists call it.

* Native Franjipani is Hymenosporum flavum

** London Plane is far and away the best tree for this application. They are consistent, have straight trunks and do relatively little damage to roads given their size.

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