Tree maintenance concerns take root

Parks crews are being told to be more careful.

The Greater Vernon Advisory Committee will advise the maintenance contractor that trees have been damaged by lawn mowers and weed eaters.

“The people maintaining the parks should be told not to hit trees,” said director Jim Garlick.

That action was taken after the District of Coldstream raised concerns about GVAC policies on the replacement of damaged trees and protecting newly planted trees.

“Over the last 10 years, a number of new trees have been planted in Lavington’s park, with some planted as memorial trees by family members,” said Coun. Doug Dirk in a written report sent to GVAC.

“In the majority of the situations, the trees have not been adequately protected and damaged by park maintenance activities. Most of these trees need to be replaced and the new ones protected adequately.”

Plastic guards are placed around trees as a buffer from machines like lawn mowers and weed eaters.

“If damaged, a tree is left until the point where it dies or becomes a safety hazard and then it is taken out,” said Al McNiven, GVAC’s parks and recreation general manager.

However, Garlick says the plastic guards aren’t adequate enough to keep mowers away from trees and other measures need to be considered.

“It’s a just a matter of maintenance and oversight of maintenance,” he said.