Parks & Gardens Report – June 2008

Toni and her helper, busy laying gravel on the corner of Eastlake Island entrance.
Bob Craske & Kitty (from Council’s Parks Department), resuscitating an underground irrigation system at Admirals Walk.
A comment from the Parks Department

Mr. de la Cruz of the Parks and Gardens department has asked me to clarify the issue of trees on property verges. Although maintenance of verges in all residential suburbs is considered to be the responsibility of the property owners, the trees on the verges remain the property of the council and cannot be cut down without permission from the Parks department. Action can be taken and fines imposed on residents who disregard this law. The department is concerned by several instances in the Marina in recent months where residents have cut down trees on verges and public open spaces, There are very few types of tree that will survive in our windy environment and where they do grow they enhance our streets and public open spaces, so we should be cautious about removing them. Where problems are caused by trees or branches growing over buildings or roads, or causing damage to walls or driveways, the Parks department will take the necessary action and have also offered to replace or supply trees for property verges. I have recently sent the department a list of places where trees are interfering with street lights and I hope that these will be trimmed soon. Please contact me directly or via the Marina office if you have any queries or problems concerning trees in your area or on your verge, or if you wish to plant a tree.

Pampas Grass

The question was raised at the recent Marina Garden Club meeting about the advisability of growing Pampas grass in small suburban gardens such as we have in the Marina. A horticulturist from Starke Ayres who was present at the meeting confirmed that it is an illegal, category 1 invasive plant and should be removed; the extremely fine pollen of the pampas grass has been proved to be damaging to the bronchial system and is therefore a potential health hazard to residents living nearby, particularly those with any sinus or chest conditions. There are many beautiful indigenous reeds and grasses (restios) with which to replace the pampas and I would be happy to source these - possibly at wholesale price s- from the local indigenous nursery. If you have a pampas grass in your garden please consider removing it.

A request for assistance and a word of thanks

The recent rains have given the ground a much needed soaking and it is time to start tidying and planting the beds in the public open spaces. There are many beds around the Marina that were initially planted and cared for by local residents who have either moved, or for one reason or another are no longer able to maintain them; and so I am looking for people who would be prepared to help. I can supply plants and compost, and where needed, organize labour from the Link; so if you have an interest in gardening and a few hours to spare from time to time, I would be glad to hear from you. My thanks to those residents who do help to care for flowerbeds, and to those who donate shrubs and plants from their gardens for use in the public open spaces.

Toni Joubert.
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