The Queen has kicked off the celebrations ahead of her Platinum Jubilee next year with a campaign that asks the public to plant new trees.
June 2022 will mark 70 years since the Queen’s accession to the throne, making her the longest reigning monarch in British history.
To honour the occasion, an initiative called the Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC) invites people across the UK to plant a tree from October onwards, when tree planting season begins.
The scheme, which is being hosted by climate charity Cool Earth hopes to “create a legacy in honour of The Queen’s leadership of the nation, which will benefit future generations”, the announcement said.
“Whether you are a seasoned gardener or a complete novice, we will guide you through the process of planting trees so that they survive and flourish for years to come,” the QGC added.
It will also be issuing official plaques for individuals who take part to display in their gardens.
The initiative was kickstarted by the patron of the project, the Prince of Wales, in March when he planted a tree in the grounds of Windsor Castle.
He told the BBC: “Whether you are an individual hoping to plant a single sapling in your garden, a school or community group planting a tree, a council, charity or business intending to plant a whole avenue of trees or a farmer looking to create new hedgerows, everyone across the country can get involved.”
From June onwards, the Woodland Trust will be donating more than three million free saplings to schools and community groups.
The QGC said the best time to plant a tree and optimise its chance of flourishing is between October and March.
It has encouraged participants to plan before they plant and ask local experts for advice on which species of tree will thrive in their area.
“It is important to think about the size and spread of the trees and how you will use the site as the trees grow. There are many different varieties of trees, all of which have different characteristics, purposes and needs (soil, water, nutrients),” the QGC added.
All of the new trees planted across the UK will be logged on an interactive map.
“There is a reason for this profoundly symbolic act. Planting a tree is a statement of hope and faith in the future. As we approach this most special year, I invite you all to join me to plant a tree for the jubilee - in other words, a tree-bilee!” the Prince of Wales said.
The campaign has been backed by Boris Johnson, who said it is a “fitting tribute to her majesty’s years of service”.
“Our trees stand at the frontline of our fight against climate change and by sustaining our beautiful countryside for generations to come. I urge everyone to get involved,” he said.
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