Issue of July 7, 2019
Mt. Province
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Balete trees at Session Road up for pruning
by Jessa Mardy P. Samidan / PIO

The City Environment and Parks Management Office will prune 72 balete trees that serve as a divider at the center of Session Road following the Philippine weather bureau’s advisory on the official start of the rainy season.

Cepmo Public Services Officer III Arturo Killip Jr. said they are now processing the pruning permit for the balete trees as they plan to start the trimming works this month before heavy rains damage the trees.

“The balete trees have overgrown at 10 to 12 feet high so we need to prune them before the electric lines are compromised,” Killip said.

He said the balete trees have to be cut down to one foot in an alternate method to allow rejuvenation of new branches while those in between will only be pruned for topiary and aesthetics. He said the pruning works will be completed in a span of three years with the goal that the trees will have an even height at three to four feet bonsai effect by the fourth year.

“We also need to prune the trees into bonsai height for easier management, aesthetics, and to protect the plant boxes from being overgrown by the roots. Remember, these trees are in the center of a very busy road,” Killip added.

Balete trees, which belong to the genus ficus specie, are capable of regrowing and should be pruned regularly to avoid branches from obstructing passageways or compromising service lines.

Killip said Cepmo will follow procedural rules in seeking the pruning permit from the city mayor as well as the need to inform the Department of Environment and Natural Resources Cordillera.

Meantime, Mayor Benjamin Magalong told Cepmo that he will have to consider public acceptability of the plan to prune the balete trees before acting on the request.

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