Local TAFE Queensland students are caring for thousands of trees as part of Council’s One Million Trees program with landowners now able to access up to 250 free trees.
The TAFE Queensland Bundaberg campus has partnered with Council to help make the One Million Trees Landowner Program possible.
Under the program landowners with a private property in the Bundaberg Regional Council area are able to apply for free trees, provided they can commit to land preparation, planting and maintenance.
Council’s One Million Trees project officer will also provide expert, tailored advice to residents who participate in the program.
Mayor Jack Dempsey said the support of TAFE Queensland and its horticultural students is key to being able to make the trees available at no cost to the resident.
“Residents will be able to participate in the One Million Trees program while helping to green the region and adding shade and amenity to their property,” Mayor Dempsey said.
“For those residents that own property in the Bundaberg Region you’re able to come and get up to 250 trees.
“I really do encourage people to get involved, Bundaberg is all about liveability and lifestyle and this program will only enhance that.
“We really want to thank TAFE Queensland and all of the students here at the Bundaberg campus who are really excited to work with these trees and help to deliver this program.”
TAFE Queensland’s Bundaberg horticulture teacher Jos Abdiel said assisting with the One Million Trees Landowner Program was a great opportunity for the Certificate III students in both the horticulture and conservation and land management courses.
“TAFE Queensland is always looking to network with local industry experts and that’s why it’s been really good for us to take on the million trees with the Council,” Jos said.
“The students can benefit from that as far as learning species, learning botanical names monitoring them, potting up, assessing soil conditions … It’s just endless what we can do with them.
“We currently have over 6000 tube stock and 26 different species of trees.
“It’s a revolving door as the stock goes out we’ll be getting new stock back in until we can get to that million.”
He said the experience gained by the students in assisting with the program would provide them with a significant advantage when it came to work readiness.
Student James Newham has been busy helping to transplant some of the trees, which will be part of the landowner program, and welcomed the awareness this offered to the importance of trees for the environment.
“I’ve always had a keen interest in horticulture – I really like the environment and I think it’s really important.
“I hope that a lot of other Councils follow suit and do the same thing.”
Fellow student Michelle Firth grew up on a farm in Bundaberg and said she had a keen interest in the environment.
“It’s a big undertaking of a project here with the council so it’s been really good to be a part of it.
“It’s something that sets an example for future generations of how we need to care for the environment.”
Jos encouraged residents to take part in the One Million Trees program.
“They’re the best carbon filters known to man and we just need more of them.
“A million to me is a good start – as far as planting and conserving the environment you can’t do better than planting a million trees.”
For more information contact Council’s One Million Trees Officer on 1300 883 699 or head to the project page.