Sepa­ra­tion tree to hon­our

Euroa Gazette - - FRONT PAGE -

A SAPLING from a his­toric tree sym­bol­is­ing the sepa­ra­tion of the colony of Vic­to­ria from NSW has been planted at Euroa’s Seven Creeks Park.

Ja­clyn Symes (MLC, North­ern Vic­to­ria) and Seven Creeks Coun­cil­lor John Ma­son planted the sapling, which will one day grow into a River Red Gum known as the ‘Sepa­ra­tion Tree’, which Strath­bo­gie Shire Coun­cil re­ceived at the Royal Botanic Gar­dens in Mel­bourne.

July 1, 1851 is known as Vic­to­ria Day – or the day the state marks the an­niver­sary Vic­to­ria sep­a­rated from its north­ern neigh­bour state New South Wales.

Sev­eral months ear­lier, thou­sands of peo­ple joined a pa­rade from William Street (Mel­bourne) across the new Princes Bridge to the Botanic Gar­dens, where Su­per­in­ten­dent Charles La­trobe made a speech be­neath a grand River Red Gum, which be­came known as the Sepa­ra­tion Tree.

This tree was placed on the Na­tional Trust of Vic­to­ria’s Sig­nif­i­cant Tree Regis­ter in 1982, how­ever, was years later van­dalised be­tween 2010 and 2013 and at­tempts to save the tree failed.

In June 2015, ar­borists com­pleted works to save it, leav­ing just the trunk and three leaf­less limbs.

Wood from the eu­ca­lypt had been sal­vaged to be used in a way that hon­ours the sig­nif­i­cance of the tree.

Late last year, Seven Creeks Ward Coun­cil­lor John Ma­son trav­elled to the Botanic Gar­dens and col­lected one of the Sepa­ra­tion Tree saplings, with the hope of plant­ing it right here in the Strath­bo­gie Shire.

Cr Ma­son said he was proud to wit­ness the plant­ing of a tree with such his­tor­i­cal sig­nif­i­cance.

“The age of the orig­i­nal Sepa­ra­tion Tree in the Botanic Gar­dens it’s es­ti­mated at about 400 years and to­day we planted an­other to hope­fully grow into some­thing just like it,” he said.

“July 1851 was such a sig­nif­i­cant time for the state of Vic­to­ria and what bet­ter way to hon­our that mile­stone by plant­ing a tree in one of the most beau­ti­ful parks in Vic­to­ria?”

HIS­TORIC PLANT­ING: Mem­ber for North­ern Vic­to­ria Ja­clyn Symes and Seven Creeks Ward coun­cil­lor John Ma­son, plant­ing the Strath­bo­gie Shire’s very first Sepa­ra­tion Tree.

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