CHOPPED: Mike Johnson of Landcare Bundaberg said the firewheel tree was planted in 1946.
CHOPPED: Mike Johnson of Landcare Bundaberg said the firewheel tree was planted in 1946. Geordi Offord

Tree gets the chop from local park

A PIECE of Bundaberg history was removed from a small park near the Burnett Traffic Bridge on Monday and Bundaberg Landcare is not happy.

The firewheel tree was planted by previous Mayor Frederick Buss after World War II in 1946.

Mike Johnson of Bundaberg Landcare said while there was some decay on the tree, better measures could have been taken to implement succession planting.

"I received an email at 8.30 on Monday morning and I didn't get to see it until I had my smoko at 11.30, then I received another email at 1.30 saying they removed the tree at 10.30 that morning,” he said.

"They could have reduced it to two metres and taken seeds to begin planting new firewheel trees in their nursery.

The Firewheel Tree before it was removed from the park.
The Firewheel Tree before it was removed from the park. Contributed

"When the tree comes out in flower it looks like a flame and I think there's a bit of significance there with the war.”

Mr Johnson said council hadn't taken any seeds from the tree.

"When I came to the park in the afternoon there were 20 seed pods on the ground and if council want them we'd happily hand them over,” he said.

"The tree was more than 70 years old so there are probably some old genetics there and native trees weren't commonly planted back then.

"After cutting it down it would have been made into woodchip.”

A Bundaberg Regional Council spokesperson said trees were removed if the posed danger.

"Every effort is made to preserve and protect trees within streets, road reserves and parks,” the spokesperson said.

"However, council will remove a tree if it poses a danger to people, property or infrastructure due to being structurally unsound or dying.”



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