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JIS News

The Forestry Department will be planting some 50 trees at the Bridgeport Primary School in Portmore tomorrow (Oct. 5), as the agency observes National Tree Planting Day 2012.

The activity, under the theme: Putting down Roots in our Communities,' gets underway at 10:00 a.m.

Senior Manager for Public Relations and Corporate Communications at the Forestry Department, Stephanie Donaldson Francis, told JIS News that the trees to be planted involve a mixture of ornamental and hardwood species. Among them are cedar, Jamaican mahogany, Spanish elm, poor man’s orchid, cassia, and Poinciana.

She said there is need for more trees to be planted at the school; but, because of the soil type, additional support is needed to carry out this exercise.

She said the Forestry Department will be seeking assistance from the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA), "to see how best they can aid to resuscitate the soil, to enable additional planting".

Mrs. Donaldson Francis told JIS News that National Tree Planting Day is a strategy used to get companies, individuals, service clubs, and the public at large, involved in preserving the environment.

She stated that while it is the Forestry Department's mandate to manage and protect Jamaica's forests, citizens are encouraged to be part of the effort.

As such, she informed that several communities across the island will also be participating in this year's tree planting day exercise.

"These communities are in the process of collecting their seedlings in preparation for National Tree Planting Day, which signals that more and more persons are being sensitised about the significance of planting trees in Jamaica," she told JIS News.

She added that various forestry teams will be dispatched across the island to assist schools in their tree planting exercise, as well as to provide information to both schools and communities about the importance of tree planting.

Some of the supporting groups and agencies are the Social Development Commission (SDC), National Housing Trust (NHT), Jamaica Public Service Company Limited (JPS), Digicel, the Local Forest Management Committees, and the Kiwanis and Lions Clubs.