Over the next two years, Elche town hall will plant 2,000 palm trees in municipal orchards with the aim of regenerating the palm grove and guaranteeing its future.
This was explained by the councillor for parks and gardens, Héctor Díez, who stressed that the repopulation will begin in spring, initially after Easter.
The oldest orchards or those that have suffered greater losses of specimens will be prioritised, such as those found in the surroundings of the Pantano and the Miguel Hernández University, in the surroundings of the General University Hospital, in the central part of the Ruta del Palmeral, and in those to the south that they border on the slopes of the Vinalopó River. Not all of them are of the so-called ‘historic orchards’ that form the World Heritage Site.
Díez has pointed out that repopulation days will be launched during the weekends with the aim of involving the public and the groups that promote the defence of the palm grove.
Díez also recalled some of the actions carried out to date, such as in the hort de Bèrnia with the repopulation of fifty palm trees, 55 specimens in the hort de la Cuerna and 30 on the promenade of the avenue of San Bartolomé de Tirajana of Arenales del Sol.
“We cannot forget that our palm grove is an entity that is alive and suffers from diseases and pests over time,” said the councillor, who stressed that due to these factors, so far this legislature, just over 2,000 specimens have been removed from municipal orchards and on public roads.
“73% have been removed due to pests, 17% due to the null presence of life, 7% due to risk of falling and 3% due to falling”. In addition, of the 75% of palm trees affected by pests, 90% were specimens of less than three metres.
Likewise, the councillor explained that despite how dangerous falling palm trees are, when there are episodes of wind in the city, they only represent 3% of cases. The municipal official has reiterated the importance of citizen involvement in this repopulation campaign to encourage interest in getting to know the palm grove and raising awareness among future generations about its preservation.