Ian H S Riseley is the President of Rotary International for 2017-18, and as part of his theme of “Rotary: Making a Difference in 2017-18,” he has challenged all 1.2 million Rotary members around the world to plant a tree before Earth Day on April 22.
In response to President Riseley’s challenge, the Pembroke Rotary Club (Bermuda, District 7230) recently partnered with the Corporation of Hamilton to plant a critically endangered Yellowood tree (Zanthoxylum flavum) in Queen Elizabeth Park.
A spokesperson said, “Following the club’s regular meeting on the morning of Thursday, February 22, club members walked to the park, where they were met by Steven DeSilva, the Parks Superintendent for the Corporation of Hamilton, along with the two Grade 1 Skilled Gardeners responsible for the Park, Ronnie Tacklin and Manuel De Canto.”
“Ronnie and Manuel had prepared the location for planting, and Steven gave the club a brief history of the Yellowood.”
He explained that this endemic tree is now critically endangered, being found mostly in the Ship’s Hill area of Harrington Sound.
Steven relayed that the tree that Pembroke Rotary Club planted had been carefully nurtured by Corporation of Hamilton staff for about six years and was the first Yellowood to be planted in the City.
He had been planning to plant the tree in the Queen Elizabeth Park and said that he and the Corporation were pleased to be able to partner with Rotary to meet the Rotary International challenge.
President of the Pembroke Rotary Club, Jason Taylor, thanked Steven and his team for their help and commended them on their efforts to maintain the park in the centre of a busy city and for helping to ensure the survival of an endangered species.
A brochure produced by Rotary International on the “1.2 Million Tree Planting Challenge” can be downloaded online.