In 2020 the it was calculated that the Labour led Exeter City Council had planted more than 10,000 trees in Exeter since the year 2000.
That’s nearly 10 trees planted a week, every week, for twenty years.
Many of the trees were planted across the city as part of the Council’s Urban Woodland project but others have been introduced into parks and open spaces over the years to increase the tree coverage. It has paid off because Exeter had a higher than average tree coverage across the city. When it was last mapped in 2006 it was calculated that 24.5% of city was covered by tree canopies. We would like to achieve more but are hampered by new pests and diseases, such as ash dieback, as well as development and climate change. However, our aim is still to reach 30% tree coverage across Exeter.
We place a high value on trees across the city. Damaged trees are replaced with new ones as we work hard to ensure the city stays green, benefiting the lives of residents, visitors and the environment itself.
But since 2020 tree planting has stepped up a gear.
Video from Exeter City Council news channel covering research showing Exeter to be one of the greenest cities in the UK. https://news.exeter.gov.uk/exeter-is-one-of-uk-s-greenest-cities-new-research-reveals
Our Council continues to take every opportunity to engage with tree planting initiatives and has a tree planting programme of its own to achieve our aim of increasing the tree coverage of the city.
There have been some noticeable projects on top of our ongoing tree planting programme.
450 trees were planted in Ludwell Valley Park by volunteers as part of the ‘Saving Devon’s Treescapes’ initiative. The project, which is backed by Devon Wildlife Trust, who managed Exeter City Council’s six valley parks, aims to stimulate action by replacing trees lost to ash dieback disease, outside woodlands, both in the countryside and in towns and cities.
2,000 trees planted as part of the Monkerton Ridge Plan in Pinhoe. The woodland creation site was recently adopted by the City Council from a developer in order to provide green space for the local community. The Council is working in partnership with Trees for Cities to create a new community woodland that will be publicly accessible and provide a number of benefits to not just local people but to the wider area.
300 trees are being planted on land off Lancelot Road by Exeter City Council. The mass planting is part of Devon Wildlife Trust’s Saving Devon’s Treescapes initiative, which aims to mitigate the loss of trees to ash dieback by planting replacements across the county. New woodland is being created at a popular green space in Exeter to compensate for the loss of trees caused by ash dieback disease.
Ash dieback is of course a real concern affecting hundreds of trees across the city but we have committed to plant two trees for every one we are forced to take down.