Experts decide to remove Old and Valuable Tree on Nathan Road

A spokesperson for the Development Bureau said today (August 3) that the Expert Panel on Tree Management (EPTM) met today to discuss the latest inspection report on an Old and Valuable Tree (OVT) at Park Lane Shoppers' Boulevard (Ficus microcarpa LCSD YTM/11) and decided that it should be removed.

According to the EPTM's recommendations following an on-site inspection on July 26, the Tree Management Office (TMO) and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) on July 31 removed the surface soil and debris near the trunk base by air spade to thoroughly assess the extent of brown root rot infection at the root area, and examined the cavity at the trunk base. According to the inspection report, which included in-depth analysis such as tomograph and resistograph tests, the extent of the cavity at the trunk base was deep and wide. Structural defects were also found near the top of the tree trunk. In addition, the boulders beneath the surface surrounding the tree trunk had restricted the penetration of aerial roots to the appropriate grade level, and hence these roots could not provide extra support. As a result, the overall structural condition of the tree is not satisfactory. While the tree currently does not pose imminent danger to the public, the tree is infected with brown root rot and its condition may abruptly deteriorate. The EPTM recommended the removal of the tree to protect public safety and to contain the spread of brown root rot fungi.

The Administration will arrange for the tree's removal as soon as possible and will thoroughly sterilise the planter and replace its soil. The planter will be suitable for replanting after sterilisation. To improve the growing environment for trees in the vicinity, the LCSD will study work plans to expand the planters alongside the Park Lane Shoppers' Boulevard. The Administration will continue to closely monitor and maintain the 34 OVTs in the area.

Ends/Friday, August 3, 2012
Issued at HKT 20:21