Wilding pines, crack willows and unstable poplar trees are part of clean-up work at Lake Hayes and Arrowtown over the next month, Queenstown Lakes District Council gardens manager Gordon Bailey said.
“The bigger project will involve a real tidy up of wilding pines on Soldiers Hill, which have literally grown from weeds into large specimens that impinge on this very special amenity, block view corridors and sun,’ Mr Bailey said.
He had worked closely with both the Arrowtown Returned Servicemen and the Arrowtown Advisory Group to ensure that all parties were in accord with the benefits of removing the wilding specimens.
“Not only will this work reduce shading on the road but it will allow the deciduous trees that they are suppressing a chance to bulk up. If they are left much longer they will be a risk to surrounding properties,” Mr Bailey said.
The wood would be donated to Arrowtown’s ‘Thursday Group which would use the proceeds from the trees to benefit the community.
Continuation of the work around assessing aging and potentially dangerous poplars will see a number of aging trees taken out from Bendemeer Bay at Lake Hayes.
“We had one fall about 18 months ago and due to the environmental threat with the location of the pump station we undertook an assessment of the trees at that time,’ Mr Bailey said.
A survey last month showed the trees had drastically deteriorated.
“They are no longer safe and the area is both a popular picnic spot and a risk, should a tree fall on to the pump station,” Mr Bailey said.
The third project would involve clearing crack willows from the northern end of Lake Hayes.
‘Again an aborist has identified the trees are now very large and unsafe,’ Mr Bailey said.
As with all three, project replanting would take place where appropriate.
“At the northern end a mixture of native plants will be replanted to help provide a habitat for the many water birds found at that end of the lake,’ he said.
Shade trees and park seats would also be provided. This will be funded by the adjacent property owner, however the intention to remove the crack willows had long been identified by the Council in its plan for the area.
“This will take us quite a long way in terms of delivering our plans to improve and enhance the Lake Hayes amenity, which is extremely popular for walking, running and riding,” Mr Bailey said.