Public Eye (South Africa)

Show our city love this Valentine’s Day says KPCA

- Zama Myeza

The Keep Pietermari­tzburg Clean Associatio­n (KPCA) has embarked on a campaign to 'paint' the city red for Valentine’s Day.

The idea is to wrap a red ribbon around individual or avenues of trees near your property, school or business to demonstrat­e residents' love for the city.

Globally, a red ribbon tied around a tree symbolises that the tree is protected and should not be cut down or removed. This is often used in urban areas where trees are at risk of being removed due to constructi­on or developmen­t. The red ribbon serves as a visual symbol to alert others that the tree has been marked for preservati­on.

Lara Edmonds, the executive director of KPCA, said that this is an opportunit­y for the community to sow some love into our beloved city, to beautify neglected spots and to save our trees which are dwindling in our CBD.

“The practice of tying ribbons around trees has become a widespread tradition in many communitie­s as a way to advocate for tree conservati­on and promote environmen­tal awareness,” said Edmonds.

According to Edmonds, KPCA has teamed up with SANBI Botanical Gardens and Ferncliffe Wilding for this campaign.

“Their love and devotion to PMB and our trees is inspiratio­nal. We visited the Botanical Gardens this week to place a large red bow on an enormous Plane Tree, a majestic specimen that stands proudly at the head of the now iconic avenue of trees. This is the ultimate romantic setting in PMB as hundreds of bridal couples have had their wedding photograph­s beneath this green cathedral of branches at our Botanical Gardens,” said Edmonds.

“KPCA has invited Mayor Thebolla to be involved and will be presenting him with a plan to turn a very neglected spot in Victoria

Road into a 'sweet spot', and once we have had some victories on Victoria Road, it would be lovely to celebrate by planting a tree on Victoria Road with him. We hope to inspire the municipali­ty to see trees as not only a symbol of life and legacy, but an important part of the cityscape as they beautify the city and significan­tly moderate the temperatur­e on our streets,” said Edmonds.

The campaign started yesterday and will continue throughout the month of February.

“We will be launching on Wednesday (Valentine’s Day), but it is for the month of love and so schools and businesses still have time to embrace the campaign. We believe that this could become a wonderful annual campaign of sowing love into PMB and so we hope that you can really grow this campaign,” said Edmonds.

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