• Deborah Hilbert
(Biologist and Ph.D. candidate at the University of Florida’’s Urban Tree and Landscape Management Lab)
• Rupert Bentley Walls
(Senior Arboricultural Officer, London Borough of Hackney)
• Keith Sacre
(Sales Director, Barcham Trees)
Tree planting has been high on the public and political agenda for some time and is often misrepresented in the media as an easy solution to the climate crisis. Unfortunately many other parts of the process are not paid the same level of attention. Where are the trees coming from? Who is producing them? Where should they be planted? In what kind of pit, and to what specification? What species should be selected? What young tree maintenance programme is in place? How will they be inspected and maintained over the decades and centuries to come? Who will actually be doing that job? Instead of talking about tree planting, we should perhaps be talking about tree establishment. Instead of focusing purely on the 20 minutes it takes to plant a tree, we should be giving more consideration to the years of work that is required before and after the act of planting to ensure that it is a success. In this week’s Arborists’’ Question Time we will be asking our expert panel the question how can we best achieve tree establishment rather than just tree planting?