Clever approach to tree restoration will preserve Vietnam War Memorial Cherry Tree Walk for future generations

14 April, 2023Posted in: Community, Environment, News

Created to bring comfort to the families of local Veterans, Bowral’s beautiful Vietnam War Memorial Cherry Tree Walk honours a community member who served our country, with each of its magnificent Tai-Haku Japanese Cherry Blossoms. When some showed signs of being affected by phytophora, root rot, a clever approach was needed to preserve the trees for generations to come.

The trees were originally planted in 2000.

Twenty years later, our efforts to source an exact replacement for trees affected by root rot revealed that this particular variety, Prunus serrulata Tai-Haku, is no longer grown as a preferred species by nurseries.

So we began researching nurseries, with the idea of grafting branch cuttings from the original trees, onto rot-resistant root stock.

“Planted to either side of a cycleway and walking track, the trees are widely enjoyed for picnics and recreation as well as official ceremonies,” says Charlene Ferguson, WSC Team Leader Tree Management. 

“This will mean that the trees will continue to flower and leaf as they always have, with only a very slight difference in the trunk colour,” Charlene explains.

“It matters to the community that Cherry Tree Walk is preserved for future generations to enjoy, and an innovative approach is needed for that to happen.”

Council’s aim is to future-proof the trees, located adjacent to a waterway, against flooding and disease. Numerous nurseries were researched to collaborate on a solution.

Flemings Nursery in Victoria were contracted to graft hundreds of branches from the original trees onto rot-resistant F12 root stock.

F-12 is shown to be more resistant to Phytophora than other root stocks on the market.

Four of the new Cherry Blossom Trees will be planted this Winter, with a total of 90 to arrive over the next five years.


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