Melbourne’s future is looking greener, after Melbourne city council and the state government announced 150,000 new trees, shrubs and grasses would be planted across the city.
The greening project will include the planting of 116,000 native grasses and wildflowers (such as Kangaroo Grass and Blushing Bindweed), 30,000 shrubs, 3,000 tube stock trees and 1,000 semi advanced trees. A number of native tree species will be planted, including River Red Gums, Golden Wattles, Coastal Banksias and Yarra Gums (which are considered rare in Victoria, despite being endemic).
Planting more trees and plants is one of the simplest ways to combat climate change. Not only do they reduce the urban heat island effect (the tendency for cities to be warmer than surrounding rural areas due to a man-made environment), but they also capture and store carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
The new plants will also provide habitat for the 276 species of birds, mammals, frogs and reptiles, and the 1,500 species of insects that live in Melbourne.
While the new plants are good for the environment, they’re also good for Melbourne’s economy during Covid. Lord mayor Sally Capp said: “We will provide jobs to 64 people who would otherwise be unemployed as a result of Covid-19. They will work for six months on the largest revegetation project we have ever undertaken.”
The exact locations of the 150,000 new trees and plants have not been confirmed, but sites under consideration include Royal Park, the Inner Circle Railway Corridor, Dynon Road Corridor, Lorimer Street and Oak Street.
The 150,000 news plants are in addition to the 3,000 new, semi advanced trees City of Melbourne has committed to planting every year, with the goal of achieving 40 per cent tree canopy cover across public land by 2040.
Read Time Out Melbourne's Sustainability Issue to discover more ways Melbourne is greening itself.
Victoria's 1,000 Steps and Warburton Redwoods are closing for more than two weeks.