Wednesday, July 16, 2008

ISA HK/China --- HK Tree News (Preserving OMT)

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Dear Station Members,

Below & attached are yet another sad case of Mature Tree Failure which was described to happen on 4 no. of our Old Mature Trees (OMT) at the former Central Police Station in HK Island. They were said to be blown over by the mini-typhoon Fangshen two weeks ago & they were inspected to be beyond hope & therefore removed. The incident has prompted senior official in our Govt to call for better preservation of these trees.

In the opinion of ISA HK/China, a task force comprised of AFCD, LCSD & local Independent Practicing Arborists can be set up to help further prevent future incidents to our OMT. The AFCD experts can provide advice on the habitat & conservation details for these local trees, which would originally come from our previous forest. The LCSD experts can provide maintenance programs with their contractor resources to be supervised by them to carry out on-going provision for these sensitive trees. The local Independent Arborists should provide regular Tree Inspection as Tree Doctors, & be on call within hours to site should an emergency situation arise. We must remember limb breakage would only take minutes to happen. We can not wait for days for the tree to let it happen. Independent Practicing Arborists should also be impartial & do not represent any Departmental interest or the interest of any company or group, & will take the liabilities for their reporting to District Board, Conservation Groups, Govt or anybody.

It is important to identify & protect OMT, but maybe more so to provide positive efforts to care, maintain & inspect them. OMT are like senile humans & they need special attention & regular medical check-up. Who would be better than the Arborists, whether in Govt or working independently, to provide such advice. Heritage Trees in Singapore undergo vigorous tree care program of maintenance & inspection by their Arborists. Most of their Heritage Trees are even lightning protected besides intensive tree care. Can we do the same to ours to match the names so given?

It is always true that Mother Nature makes the Rules, not any of us for a tree. What HK may require now to preserve our valuable assets may be the correct action, & be quick.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

The ISA Mission - Through research, technology, and education, promote the professional practice of arboriculture and foster a greater public awareness of the benefits of trees. (

風神吹倒4大樹 林鄭促盡快保育

7月16日 星期三 05:10



上月熱帶氣旋「風神」襲港,把中區警署建築群內一棵17米高、約30多年樹齡的大葉榕(Ficus virens)連根拔起,壓倒旁邊的木棉(Bombax ceiba)、朴樹(Celtis sinensis)和竹柏 (Nageia nagi),經康文署專家檢驗,除了竹柏倖存,其餘3棵樹全部「不治」。4棵樹均不在古樹名冊內。


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