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Author Topic: Protection of indigenous trees  (Read 3956 times)
MG
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Protection of indigenous trees
« on: January 24, 2007, 16:39:49 PM »

Many trees and shrubs growing in the wild in Malta and Gozo are protected by law. This is perfectly understandable, as for certain species, the number of specimens still growing in the wild can often be counted on the fingers of one hand, or grow only in one or two restricted locations.

The protection also extends to commoner species, as in many cases these plants are an important feature of their natural habitat.

Therefore one should obtain the required specimens from nursery grown stock, never from the wild. At most, limit yourself to taking seeds - in reasonable quantities. Even the taking of cuttings of certain species can constitute an offence - but ultimately our concern should not be whether we are breaking the law or otherwise, together with an evaluation of the chances of our being caught - but rather that we refrain from causing any damage to individual plants and ecosystems, knowingly or otherwise.

So don't dig up wild trees or plants!

MG
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Michael in Australia
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Re: Protection of indigenous trees
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2008, 03:08:30 AM »

Hello Malta Gardening

I am a consulting arborist (one who cares for trees in the urban landscape) in Australia.  I came across your website and found a number of your discussion threads very interesting.  I am particularly passionate about the preservation of locally indigenous trees.  As an arborist i spend alot of time assessing trees in Adelaide (South Australia) and provide advice on tree management, pruning advice, species selection, tree preservation on development or building sites etc.  We have a Mediterranean climate here in Adelaide and have many of the native trees from Malta growing here, so i am very familiar with them. 

I have been to Malta several times in the past and have seen some of your fine gardens with native and introduced trees (San ANton Gardens, Il Buskett etc.)  I also am aware of the long history of tree removals over many years and the general low density of trees on the island.  Don't worry, we in Australia have a similar track record.

I would like to suppor the views expressed in this thread that there is a great importance in preserving and maintaining indigenous trees.  In addition, ornamental trees should also be considered as an important part of the landscape.  Trees and shrubs are proven to provide a range of social, environmental, economic and psychological benefits that improve the pleasantness of a local area that positively affect human wellbeing.  The amenity value of trees include gaseous and particulate pollution mitigation, amelioration of climatic extremes (shading, cooling and wind speed reduction), mitigation of heat islands, attenuation of noise pollution, store and sequester carbon (reducing greenhouse gasses), improve air quality, improve water quality, stormwater mitigation and erosion control, visual screening of undesirable views, aesthetically enhance local areas, aesthetically enhance urban structures, improve property values, reduce urban glare, improve human health, wellbeing and relaxation, reduce stress and anxiety, reduce crime and improve healing rates of patients.  In addition, locally indigenous plants provide further benefits including; provide important habitat for local fauna, maintain biodiversity in the local environment, provide wildlife corridor links with areas of native and indigenous vegetation.

I will be visiting Malta again in July 2008 and look forward to seeing more of your trees.  More importantly i woul like to know if there are any people who look after trees in the urban landscape that i could get in touch with when i visit.  I am hoping to meet up with an arborist to discuss tree management issues when i am there.

SO please, look after your valuable trees.

Michael in Australia
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MG
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Re: Protection of indigenous trees
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2008, 11:21:58 AM »

Hello Michael,

Very interesting post you have written - and it seems you also have a very interesting job, too!

Be good to keep in touch closer to the date of your arrival if you'd care to meet up on a visit to San Anton or anywhere else of interest. I am also very much "into" native trees and plants and propagation of these species is an ongoing affair.

As far as arborists go, to be honest I'm not sure that position even exists locally... but of course someone is doing the job even if going by another name. Mainly in Malta the people looking after practically all the island are the ELC- Environment Landscapes Consortium - as evident by the name, a consortium of garden centres/landscapers. They seem to be doing a very good job generally - at least the before and after are an ocean apart.

If you look them up you will surely find plenty of information.

Thanks once again for your post,

MG
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MWP
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Re: Protection of indigenous trees
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2008, 12:53:55 PM »

Yes I know the arborist Dr. Charles F. Grech, lecturer and friend of mine.
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MWP
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Re: Protection of indigenous trees
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2008, 13:06:10 PM »

Rhamnus alaternus, Popolus alba, Salix spp., Quercus ilex, Ceratonia siliqua, Tetraclinis articulata, Vitex agnus-castus and wild, large (=old) Olea europaea are some of the common protected native trees.
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