It was a long time ago, during the 1960s - 1970s, when poplar trees were the tree to plant when the suburbs were spreading south and new Calgary neighborhoods were springing up. They were the popular tree back then in communities but they definitely weren't the best choice.
A poplar tree only has a lifespan of 50 - 60 years at the most and many neighborhoods in Calgary are reaching that mark. It's time to act and replace these trees to keep the suburbs looking their best. The only problem with this replanting situation is that it is estimated to cost approximately $450,000 just for the initial replanting.
The poplars will have to be cut down but the city is planning on planting 2 trees to make up for every one that has to go. This time the trees planted will be a variety of species such as willow, oak and elm to cover the bases should some type of disease or pest decide to attack.
If there's an infestation of bugs or insects that prefer one type of tree, this can create a large impact on the neighborhood and any of the parks around it if there is an abundance of this one type. By diversifying the kinds of trees planted, the impact will be less and the problem easier to resolve.
Recently poplars in many southern Calgary neighborhoods have had a problem with satin moths. With so many poplars in the area it has become a real issue.
The city is planning to plant 366 trees initially in Calgary in communities such as Willow Park, Maple Ridge etc. This will be an ongoing project that will eventually diversify the tree species across the city. It's a project whose time has come and is an important part of the beautification of Calgary. With a wider range of trees growing this city will be more attractive to not only the residents that live here but prospective investors as well.
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