Effective urban tree planting systems address all issues concerning planting trees in the urban environment. The right root growth capicity, stormwater-management, managing heavy traffic loads while integrating existing and new utilities.
Urban tree planting solutions
For trees to grow into big, healthy mature and functional trees it takes a lot more than digging holes and planting trees, especially in the urban environment. Sometimes we seem to forget trees grow and there should be a balance between tree size and root system. Functional trees specify the right soil volume according to the required growing space of the future trees canopy size.
It’s obvious that city green beautify our urban environment. Besides being beautiful, only urban trees provide so many other benefits that trees are regarded at the basis of city’s green infrastructure.
Most important benefit is being the solution to slow down climate change. Large urban trees cool our warming planet, reduce flood risks and function as an excellent store of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while releasing oxygen. Planting trees can contribute to a healthier planet while improving our daily lives, for example by decrasing high blood pressure and stress.
Planting trees today is essential for future generations.
TREES IN THE URBAN CONTEXT
It’s an accepted fact that mature trees can contribute significantly to healthier soil, air, and water in cities. But cities are not typically hospitable places for plant growth, and few trees live long enough to reach maturity and provide meaningful ecological services.
We take into account that the urban soil is used in a multifunctional way; urban forestry, civil works and water management, while dealing with different expectation patterns of trees than in rural areas. Trees in cities need room to thrive without damaging the pavement and underground infrastructures.
The challenges of combining green, blue and grey infastructures:
Lack of space: Every inch in the city is already been claimed by various of functions; road foundation, sewer systems, parking places, utilities etc. With only a small space available, highly effective soil volume is needed to insure trees will grow into big trees.
Utilities running everywhere: When you want to plant a tree in the city, there can be existing utilities located that may be in the same area of your planned digging. And mostly not exactly where you expected them. Relocating those ultilities is not budgeted and therefore it’s most cost effective if the treepit can integrate utilities as they are.
Road building specifications: Trees need loose well aerated soils in contrast to road building needing a highly compacted soil. Trees attempting to grow in compacted soil rarely meet their full growth potential and may die prematurely or damage the pavement while trying to survive.
Disturbed water cycle: Urban soil and trees are drying out while we are directing water away by sewer systems. This is a principle that is often applied. It makes more sense to first let the tree benefit from the rain before it drains away. There is a need for solutions that are based on circular not linear processes.
Because of these harsh conditions in the city, we have to try to reach the most ideal situation for the tree. Time has past for mono-functional use of space.