55,000 free trees are being offered to Londoners from today, as part of an attempt to tackle air pollution in the capital.
30,000 of the trees are available for Londoners to plant in their gardens and shared green spaces, while communities groups and schools can apply for some of the further 25,000 trees, to be installed at local planting events.
The giveaways are part of the Mayor’s work to increase London’s tree canopy by 10% by 2050 and maintain London’s status as the world’s first National Park City. The removal of pollution and carbon dioxide from the air, and the reduction of flood risk are just some of the benefits that trees bring. They also offer wildlife habitats — and they look pretty good too. Don't just take our word for it though:
How to get your free tree
If you've got a private, shared or community garden that would benefit from a tree or two, you can apply to receive them from the Woodland Trust, which is supplying them as part of its Big Climate Fightback campaign. The trees are supplied in pairs — a rowan tree and a cherry tree — and you can apply here by 11 November to be in with a chance of getting a pack.
If you're not fortunate enough to have a garden (we hear ya), The Conservation Volunteers may have the solution. That's the organisation supplying packs of 10, 20 or 50 trees to community groups and schools which want to hold their own planting events. Order your trees here, and check back from mid-October to get tops on planting them, and organising the events.
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said
London has some of the best green spaces and our commitment to preserving and increasing our tree canopy is one of the main reasons we are the world’s first National Park City. I want to encourage as many Londoners as possible to apply for our free tree packs, either for their own gardens or for organising community tree planting events, from schools to hospitals. Simple steps like planting trees help us as we address the climate and ecological crisis — and I look forward to thousands of new trees being planted across the city during National Tree Week.
All of the trees provided as part of this initiative are UK sourced and grown, and have been chosen for the benefits they offer in terms of wildlife habitats and providing fruit.