ORANGE’S autumn colours are at their best once again, due, in part, to community efforts.
Orange councillor Neil Jones thanked the community for responding to calls in January to water newly-planted, heat-stressed trees on their nature strips during this year’s dry summer.
“Protecting younger trees will pay off for generations to come,” he said.
While rain has improved conditions since January, Cr Jones encouraged the community to continue to look out for their trees and report specimens in distress to the council.
“Our trees are so critical to the appearance of Orange and we really want people to be aware of the importance of the streetscape,” he said.
“The council’s street tree planning and maintenance program is important because it helps secure Orange’s established tree avenues and ensures a continuation of attractive streetscapes, not to mention the increase to property value and marketability.
“At a time when houses are getting closer together and backyards are getting smaller, we need to constantly look for ways of staying in contact with nature.”
With Orange Visitor Information Centre staff reporting large numbers of visitors taking a copy of the Autumn Colours in Orange brochure, including the city’s best streets, parks and vantage points to enjoy the changing hues, Cr Jones said the natural environment’s contribution to tourism was also critical.
Orange Botanic Gardens attracted 77,000 people last year.
“For tourism, the autumn colours are so important,” Cr Jones said.
“Orange is known throughout Australia as the ‘colour city’ due to the brilliant autumn foliage of its street trees and with the help of the local community, 2014 is no exception.”