For some property owners having a significant tree on their grounds may seem a blessing, for others it can be a struggle to care for, especially if the tree is very large, very old or protected.
In recognition of the need to properly care for protected trees on private land, Ōrākei Local Board set up a grant which focuses on helping fund the cost of proper maintenance of significant or scheduled trees.
“The grant was initiated following concern expressed by local landowners around the affordability of tree upkeep” explains Scott Milne, Ōrākei Local Board Chair.
“With increasing intensification the Board is keen to find a way to help maintain the significant trees that make our area special. We are grateful that many landowners are able to take on the cost of upkeep themselves. For others this grant can be a big help. Mostly it is those trees of significant size, or properties with more than one tree on site, which are in most need of funding assistance.”
Schedule 10 of the Auckland Council Unitary Plan and Auckland Council District Plan includes a list of all notable trees across Auckland. Within the Ōrākei local board area there are the following approximate numbers in some of the larger neighbourhoods:
- 45 in Ellerslie
- 21 in Orakei
- 75 in Remuera
- 24 in St Heliers
- 9 in Kohimarama
- 21 in Glendowie
Most landowners who have a notable tree on their property should already be aware of it the classification, however it takes only a moment to check the address on the council website by searching Schedule 10 Notable Tree Schedule or Auckland Council District Plan (HGI).
The Ōrākei Quick Response and Tree Protection Grant round is offered up to five times a year and applications must align with the set outcomes and funding priorities, including that the notable trees are on land owned by the applicant, they are identified as scheduled in the Auckland Unitary Plan, or are a significant non-scheduled tree with a score of 15 or greater when assessed against the criteria for tree scheduling.
Information on this criteria can be found on the council website by completing the form on Section 6 of the Guidelines for Nominating a Notable Tree for Evaluation which takes into consideration the age, size, species, form, visual contribution, impacts upon health and/or property.
“This may seem like a complicated process to ascertain if your tree is suitable for a grant” explains Milne, “but I encourage any landowners with large, potentially special trees in need of care on their property, to consider this grant opportunity if help is required.”