4 August 2022
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While every council has a tree budget, this has to cover not only the planting of new trees in a variety of locations, but also maintenance of the existing trees in the area every year. This money also includes watering trees on a regular basis during the warmer months.

The sponsorship schemes we host for councils encourage residents to water trees for several reasons. Here we’ll try to explain why it’s important for everyone to play their part in looking after street trees:

Resident watering is more efficient

When councils water trees, they have to transport it to the tree locations using a truck or bowser. As well as using fuel and contributing to traffic congestion, someone has to be sent to do this work. This all adds up, and makes it a very expensive way of keeping the trees watered.

By contrast, as a local resident you can simply turn on the tap, use rainwater collected in a water butt if you have the space, or grey water from your washing-up and baths. It’s much more cost-effective, not to mention more sustainable and better for the environment.

You can also easily see if the trees in your street needs water, so can take immediate action if there’s a sudden heatwave or localised drought.

A council would have to reorganise resources and it’s often difficult to do this at short notice.

Planting more trees

If councils are using less of their budget to water trees, they can spend more money on planting more trees in your area.

On average, if a resident waters a street tree, it can save the local council a huge £200 per tree. Every tree counts in making our towns and cities more liveable, and better preparing our communities for future heatwaves. It therefore makes sense to channel as many resources as possible into planting trees and the more technical maintenance that specialist tree officers and contractors need to do.

Anyone can water a street tree

Watering a tree is really easy, and anyone can do it – young or old.

Lots of our sponsors share the responsibility of watering with their neighbours, and some decided to rope their children in to do it!

It’s fun, and good for you

Watering trees in your neighbourhood is a fun, relaxing way to make that connection with nature. You’ll be able to see first hand how the trees are growing and developing, and how much good it does them to be watered regularly.

Go on, be a tree hero – get involved in tree watering today!

Read our watering tips for how to get started.