Cambridge Canopy Project tree offer

15th December 2021

New Partnership announced to encourage Cambridge Residents to plant 12,500 trees as part of the Cambridge Canopy Project

Cambridge City Council is partnering with one the UK’s leading online tree specialists, Ashridge Nurseries, to offer the City’s 54,000 residents, money off vouchers, in a bid to encourage the planting of 12,500 new trees as part of the Cambridge Canopy Project.

The Cambridge Canopy Project was launched in 2019 and aims to increase tree canopy cover across the City from 17% to 19% by 2050.  Tree canopy cover is the name given to the layer of leaves and branches that cover the ground and is measured as a percentage of the total area.

Following the recent COP26 Climate Conference in Glasgow, the importance of planting trees is hugely topical. Growing urban forests and increasing tree canopy cover can help ensure our towns and cities are better prepared for future.  climate scenarios Increased tree canopy creates vital shade and cooling effects on urban areas and can reduce the risk and impact of flash flooding, air pollution, as well as providing a host of proven benefits for our mental health and wellbeing.

Cambridge City currently has 17% tree canopy cover which is slightly above the national average. The Cambridge Canopy Project’s goal to increase the tree Canopy by a further 2%, to 19%, will provide an additional 82 hectares of tree cover, which is the equivalent of an area the size of approximately 120 football pitches.

Cambridge City Council’s partnership with Ashridge Nurseries offers residents in the CB1-CB5 postcodes a 20% discount voucher off the price of a carefully curated selection of ornamental trees, fruit trees and shrubs to suit any size garden. Even those without much space can still get planting as there is a choice of small patio or balcony trees available, which can be successfully grown in pots.

The Cambridge Canopy Project offer is available from Ashridge Nurseries special campaign web pages and the offer runs from 3 December to 28 February. This period in Autumn/Winter is the best time of year to plant, as it enables the dormant trees and shrubs to get established in preparation for their peak growing period throughout spring and summer.  In addition to highlighting the selection of trees on offer, Ashridge Nurseries’ website also provides useful information and videos to explain how to plant and care for your trees or shrubs.

Ashridge Nurseries has been providing UK gardeners and landscapers with high quality plants, trees, hedging and shrubs since 1949.   MD Rupert Cotterell said, “We are delighted to be supporting Cambridge City Council and the innovative Cambridge Canopy Project and to be able to offer this special collection of mail order trees at discounted prices, for the residents of Cambridge.  The simple process of planting a tree or shrub can make such a positive impact on the environment, wildlife and for our own health and wellbeing.”

Dr Matthew Ling, Project Lead, of the Cambridge Canopy Project said, “We are very pleased to be partnering with the tree specialists at Ashridge Nurseries on this dedicated voucher scheme for our residents. Hopefully it will enable many more people across the city to join in and plant trees, helping to grow our urban forest, and increasing the flow of benefits we all receive as a result.”

“Trees are the superheroes of the natural world planting a tree is a simple and cost-effective action we can all take to help reduce the impact of climate change.  Cambridge City Council is committed to planting more trees on Council land, but analysis of Cambridge’s land area shows that 77% of the city is privately owned.  Therefore, our residents hold the key to realising the goal of the Cambridge Canopy Project and increasing our city’s tree canopy cover to 19%, which will bring a huge benefit to the environment and us all!

Councillor Alex Collis – Executive Councillor for Open Spaces, Sustainable Food and Community Wellbeing said, “This partnership with Ashridge Trees represents a really important piece of the jigsaw in terms of realising the aim of the Cambridge Canopy Project – to grow canopy cover in the city by 2%. By facilitating and incentivising Cambridge residents to buy trees to plant in their gardens, in addition to Council led planting on public land and our various free tree giveaway schemes, we hope that Cambridge will become better adapted for the challenges that climate change will present us.”