Deniliquin Pastoral Times
Hundreds of trees planted by students
Primary school students from eight local schools at Wakool, Barham, Tooleybuc and Moulamein planted more than 400 seeds and seedlings to contribute to the National Tree Day tally for 2021.
Planet Ark and Olivia NewtonJohn co-founded National Tree Day in 1996, and challenges communities to help plant one million trees, shrubs and grasses each year around July 31.
For the project in the RiverinaMurray, a local nursery provided 464 native seedlings to a total 600 young people, from toddlers in daycare to high school students.
The Western Murray Land Improvement Group spearheaded the project through the initiative of coordinator Stacey Brooke.
‘‘It was just an idea and I ran with it and it worked,’’ Ms Brooke said.
Murray River Council and Murray Irrigation Limited contributed grants which allowed WMLIG to buy seeds, tube stock and other gardening gear for the benefit of schools and students.
‘‘A couple of the schools have never done anything for tree day and now they want to do it as an annual thing,’’ Ms Brooke said.
She hopes she can work with schools in a ‘‘joint venture’’ to revegetate areas in the RiverinaMurray region.
‘‘I’ve got a passion for promoting landcare to younger generations and I enjoy sharing information to younger landcarers to help them get involved,’’ Ms Brooke said.
The flexibility of the program was also ‘‘the beauty of it,’’ because schools could match their projects with the environmental lessons they already had underway.
One kindergarten gave children a single tube stock each to plant at home, while Barham High School planted a ‘‘bee garden’’ to provide a pollen source for its new beehive.
Other equipment included a composter, rakes, yard carts, shovels, trowels, sprinklers and watering cans.
The main disappointment came when the lockdown prevented Ms Brooke from attending the events, but she was still grateful she could provide the schools with the opportunity to take part in National Tree Day.
She said next year would be something to look forward to.
‘‘I still enjoyed it thoroughly and they all want to be involved next year,’’ she said.