Hey everyone, today I’m going to talk to you all about urban forests and why I think that we need to make changes to the planting of urban forests, even though it seems like they are beneficial for our environment. For those of you who don’t know what an urban forest is, an urban forest is the trees that you see all around you when you are in an urbanized environment. You see the trees in your backyard, along the sidewalks and streets and nowadays even on some rooftops and buildings and that’s what composes most of the urban forest in Toronto. To some of you this may seem like a good idea, because why not? Trees can do wonders for our air quality and they make the city look a lot prettier. Now I know what you’re thinking, this guy is just going to bore me to sleep with some environmental bull crap. But hear me out! The way that urban trees are planted is not always a good thing because it is very harmful for the trees, in some cases it is a huge waste of money and we need to start realizing the potential for better areas of the city where we can plant these trees if we really want to improve the tree canopy in Toronto.
A common misconception about a tree is that its roots grow down, but this is not actually the case. The roots of a tree spread out very wide, potentially as wide as the tree’s leaves spread themselves. Now I’m sure many of you have seen trees planted along sidewalks and streets in Toronto. On the lakeshore between Carlaw and Coxwell for example, there are very thin lane dividers with grass on them. Now fairly recently, the city of Toronto has planted numerous trees along those dividers, with the idea that in some years from now, the whole strip would look beautiful with all the trees fully grown. But those trees will never get the chance to grow up. When planting trees you really need to look at the surrounding area of where the tree is being planted. Like I said before, a tree’s roots need to spread out very wide in order for...
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