Zoo plants Jubilee trees for Queen - and puts down roots for future

Joseph Bulmer

Planting has been under way to create a special meadow of trees to mark the Queen's Platinum Jubilee at Paignton Zoo.

It is part part of the Queen’s Green Canopy, a unique tree planting initiative created to mark Her Majesty’s 70 years on the throne.

The zoo has planted 29 trees, inviting representatives from all of their teams to take part and plant a tree. The purpose was to promote the importance of planting sustainably as well as to create a legacy to honour the Queen’s leadership of the nation.

After the disruptions and uncertainty of the pandemic, the zoo also believes that the planting represents something symbolic; putting down meaningful roots for the future of the zoo, and acknowledging the incredible efforts that staff have made during the challenging times.

Dennis Flynn, chief executive officer of Wild Planet Trust, the charity that runs the zoo, planted the first tree and said: "Today’s tree planting provides an opportunity for the Wild Planet Trust to humbly and with gratitude honour Her Majesty’s extraordinary service. The trees will provide a canopy under which future generations can enjoy nature and in which native species can thrive"

Catherine Mortimer, the zoo's deputy curator of botanics, said “The trees will serve as a visual token of our appreciation for the Queen and will also create new habitats for our native species including birds, bees and insects. What better way to honour the Queen’s legacy than to help provide a better future for our local wildlife.”

She continued “We have chosen a variety of trees including Whitebeam, wild cherry, and lime. Many of the trees we have selected are quick growing trees, some provide red fruits and some beautiful blossom, such as cherry. Hopefully they will delight our visitors with their rich colours and potential to provide both shelter and shade for years to come.”