Sad disdain for trees

Henk Egberink, Kenilworth

It is sad that shopping centres and tree managements show total disdain towards trees (“Illegal trimming ruining trees,” Tatler, March 26).

Trees were part of the original approval of this building. The aim was to preserve the tree canopy in the suburb and to maintain the environment of companionship and health in Rondebosch.

The benefits of the trees are all in the leaves and roots. It is all about aesthetics, coolness, carbon absorption, oxygen generation and soil stability. For good measure add the birds and the bees. So why does management allow this hacking and destruction of these benefits? If they have the interests of their customers and the community at heart, they should have them fed and pruned professionally by people who understand trees.

In fact you must question the operator.

How any company involved in tree pruning can even accept such a contract, and implement it, is illogical. They should not be in business. Trees are living entities and deserve respect and caring.

The management’s excuses are unacceptable. They must supervise all contract work. I believe that the pruning was indeed done for the benefit of advertising.

Denying this is utter nonsense. It does the management no credit.

The other question that must be asked is why the shoppers did not take any responsibility? I am pleased that Hank Lith took the bull by the horns, but many other shoppers saw what was happening and took no action. There are rules for trees and these are overseen by Recreation and Parks. Any pruning must be approved by them. They are the custodians. The first step is to ask the contractor for his permit. If he can’t produce it, ask him to stop. Be forceful; you have rights as a citizen.

He can only continue once you have seen this permit. Secondly inform Recreation and Parks.

The full procedure is at treekeeperscapetown.org.za You should also read Treekeepers’ brochure and copy it to your computer.

We all understand what global warming is doing to our health and lifestyle. Capetonians should accept some responsibilities towards this. Also demand that the council takes more responsibilities. If you are not prepared to fight for trees and the benefits they give, you don’t deserve to live in the most beautiful city in the world.