THE Environmentally Concerned Citizens of Orange (ECCO) is partnering with Orange City Council, Orange Credit Union, Western NSW Local Health District, NSW Rural Fire Service, and Habitat Connect to host the National Tree Day event in the Bloomfield bushland next Sunday.
Since 1996 National Tree Day has been Plant Ark’s flagship tree-planting and nature care event, connecting communities, schools, and businesses with nature. In that time, over 3.8 million people have planted over 23 million native trees, shrubs, grasses and edibles.
ECCO and council have been facilitating National Tree Day events in Orange for many years, attracting numerous locals to participate in tree planting and regeneration. This year, the Bloomfield bushland will benefit.
The Bloomfield bushland is a 12-acre box gum woodland located on the Orange Hospital campus, behind Ronald McDonald House, extending through to Bloomfield Road.
The event site at the Bloomfield Road entrance will be surrounding one of two recently constructed gravel pathways.
This nature trail was constructed with a Western NSW Local Health District Health Promotion and Prevention Grant, providing a safe, therapeutic and accessible green space on the hospital campus.
A variety of unique and endemic flora and fauna can be seen throughout the year, including the threatened Superb Parrot. Gliders and Tawny Frogmouths are active in the bushland during the night, and kangaroos often graze in the area.
Along the nature trail native grasses and shrubs can be seen including poas and lomandras, as well as yellow button flowers.
The health benefits of green spaces are widely documented, including in NSW Health’s Healthy Urban Development Checklist (2010) and the Beyond Blue to Green report by Deakin University and beyondblue. They highlight the significant and positive impact on mental and physical health in individuals and communities.
Co-location of the bushland to hospital services, charitable accommodation, Orange Ex-Services Country Club, and council reserves, provides a perfect source of connection for community members to access public reserves and services in the area.