Flanders to plant half a million trees throughout the winter
Thursday, 12 December 2019
Throughout planting season, the agency calls on nature lovers to join forest rangers outdoors. Credit: PxHere
Half a million trees and shrubs will be planted in Flanders in the coming months in order to rejuvenate Flemish forests — and to bring people outside, the forestry and nature agency announced on Thursday.
A wide variety of species, including oaks, lime trees and hazel shrubs will be put into the ground throughout the winter, the Flemish Agency for Nature and Forests said, according to Het Nieuwsblad.
The agency said it expected some 70 hectares to be added to Flemish woodlands as a result of the planting operation, which will aim to rejuvenate the forests but also to bring Flemish nature lovers together for a day outdoors.
“Come and plant trees in Ypres!” the agency posted on Twitter. “Put your boots on and bring a spade, we will provide the trees, planting holes and a drink.”
The meeting at Ypres is one of several organised by the agency, with one already organised in November in the Purgatory Forest (Vagevuurbos), which saw Flemish residents plant a total of 1,000 trees, adding 1.5 hectares to the 540-hectare forest.
Throughout the planting season, the agency will continue to call on citizens, schools and participants in social employment programs to join their forest rangers to put new trees in the ground.
The operations, which also include felling, aim to “keep forests resilient and robust” and to promote biodiversity, with the agency noting that not all planted trees were expected to be there in the next decades, since they will “compete for space and light” to “mutually determine” which tree will grow old in the Flemish forest.