A Tree-mendous Year for Trees in Bristol

Councillor Ellie King, smiling in front of Bristol's City Hall.
Today’s guest blog is from Councillor Ellie King, Cabinet member for Public Health and Communities and Labour Councillor for Hillfields

The One Tree Per Child team have been busy planting thousands of trees across the city this winter, with the support of hundreds of volunteers from all walks of life. It’s been a brilliant effort. With just over a month to go before the planting season comes to an end, we look set to have hit our target by planting around 16,000 new trees in Bristol. 

This includes ten new woodlands, over a thousand street and parkland trees, one Tiny Forest, eight new orchards, and two new hedgerows. We have also gifted over 4,000 fruit trees to children and young people via our schools tree programme. 

One Tree Per Child started to give every child in Bristol the opportunity to plant a tree and see it grow. Our commitment is to plant at least 6,000 trees per year – one for every child starting school. We could not achieve any of this without our One Tree Per Child Volunteers – who come out in all weathers and give their time and passion to make a difference – knowing that the small trees we plant now will grow to be the woods of tomorrow filled with wildlife, orchards laden with fruit, grand trees, or parkland trees keeping us cool, cleaning the air, keeping us in touch with the seasons, and giving simple joy to many. 

Our target is to double Bristol’s tree canopy – adding over 660 hectares or 1,300 acres, equivalent to 840 full sized football pitches. This is a big challenge requiring a big effort whether you are a landowner, citizen, or business leader. We are working with key stakeholders to develop a Bristol Tree Strategy and Tree Planting Plan and want to hear from people across the city about what you think about trees. We have opened a questionnaire, with participants having a chance to win a fruit tree delivered straight to your door.

How you can get involved

Be a One Tree Per Child volunteer – and help out at one of our tree planting events here or at one of our tree care days which take place over the spring and summer.

Complete our Tree Questionnaire (please share with your friends and family – the more responses we get the better).

Sponsor a tree – you can chose one of our pre-agreed planting locations or you suggest your own. 

Plant a tree in your garden – anytime up to the end of March is the best time to plant a tree, with plenty of choice at our very own Blaise Plant Nursery to suit any garden. Other local garden centres are also available. Over 4,000 children will be planting a tree in their garden this winter from our schools tree programme.

I want to say a huge thank you to the Council’s Tree Planting team, whose passion and commitment for increasing our canopy year on year is clear to see. They go above and beyond to make the sessions fun, engaging, informative and easy to understand. As I am sure all the volunteers would agree, it is a very satisfying and joyful experience that gives us a real sense of pride over our neighbourhoods. Thank you!