Tree Experts are reporting the numerous benefits from the planting of trees in urban spaces. The healing and therapeutic effects of our natural surroundings is something that most people do not give much thought to. This is true even where there is a notable absence of natural space and features in urban environments today.
The man-made surroundings of cities and towns are something that the majority of the human race accustoms itself to. That we are one of the few (or possibly the only) species that chooses to disconnect ourselves from nature to such an extreme degree, should give us an indication of what we might be missing out on. There is growing research amongst both Tree Specialists and Town Planners that there may be untold benefits from the planting of trees in urban spaces. Not only for encouraging wellbeing, but also from tree experts’ recent studies into how trees absorb some of the harmful effects of air pollution in built-up areas.
Studies in international urban areas point toward the harmful effects of airborne particles, such as lung disease and asthma. These are somewhat reduced in wooded urban areas. This is due to the ability of trees to act as a natural pollution barrier. In the UK, the Woodland Trust has produced a report outlining the benefits of Urban Tree planting in conjunction with other initiatives to improve urban air quality.
“Addressing these issues over 100 years ago, National Trust founder Octavia Hill stressed that ‘tenants and all urban workers should have access to open space. Places to sit in, places to play in, places to stroll in, and places to spend a day in.” Octavia’s Orchard Project at Southbank Centre
It would seem the effects of trees in towns and cities are not limited to being “pollution barriers”. Green space also has pronounced healing effects on human wellbeing. In Japan, Tree Experts and Health Officials have recently investigated the positive effects of urban green space that points toward positive effects of urban greenery. Recent UK projects such Octavia’s Orchard at London’s Southbank Centre and The Union Street Orchard Project are piloting long-term projects to grow and sustain trees for inner-city housing estates. The role of Tree Experts in Town Planning and Urban Planting alongside other pollution-reduction measures can be a step toward gaining the wealth of positive benefits offered by trees planted in any urban environment.