New woodland at Fairlands Valley Park
Planting has begun on a new woodland in Fairlands Valley Park.
Around 4,000 trees will be planted in the Southfield of Fairlands with help from the local community. Throughout December and January, pupils from schools in Stevenage helped to plant a mixture of trees that are mainly native to the UK, including species like silver birch, wild cherry, crab apple, oak and chestnut. The trees will also vary in size – ranging from smaller seedlings to some over two metres tall, but the majority will comprise whips, which are tree seedlings around two or three years old.
In addition, seven silver maple trees will be planted within the new woodland to mark Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee.
It will take several years for the woodland to develop into maturity. However, there will be a variety of different habitats to enhance biodiversity while the trees mature, including meadow grasslands, woodland glades, naturally regenerating scrub and access paths.
Councillor Simon Speller, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Climate Change, said:
“We know how important trees are for the planet, not only because of their contribution to increasing biodiversity and improving air quality but also because of their ability to help mitigate the effects of rising temperatures. This is the largest planting of new trees the council has ever undertaken, which shows our commitment to tackling climate change.
We’re looking forward to working with the local community, including the next generation at Stevenage schools, to plant the new woodland and seeing the trees mature over the next few years.”
There will be a competition to name the new woodland, and residents are invited to send their suggestions to email@example.com by Wednesday 8 February. Suggestions will be shortlisted, and residents will be invited to vote for their favourite name during March 2023.