Tree-planting day helps Unity College students connect with nature

About 250 seedlings have been planted around the Murray Bridge school's grounds for National Tree Day.

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago; the second-best time is now, or so goes a Chinese proverb.

Students at Unity College made the most of the moment on Friday, getting their gloves on and planting 250 trees around the Murray Bridge school's grounds.

More than 60 of them donned gloves to garden in the sunshine and enjoyed a sausage sizzle and a cool drink afterwards.

Many of the seedlings were placed around a new agricultural centre at the college, due to open next week.

Development director Wayne Gehling congratulated the students for “giving back to our planet and the environment”.

He also thanked the college’s grounds staff for preparing the area, setting up a watering system and teaching the students how to plant the trees properly.

The activity was prompted by National Tree Day, an initiative of the environmental foundation Planet Ark.

Its deputy chief executive officer, Rebecca Gilling, said regenerating the land and our own wellbeing was more important now than ever.

She invited all Australians to connect with nature, “whether that be by planting a tree in the backyard, doing some weeding in local bushland or simply hugging a tree”.

She hoped Planet Ark would be able to return to its tradition of inviting members of the public to tree-planting events around the nation next year.

Photos of Ruby Thiele, Zoe Harrington and Caitlin Turner; and Lucy Thomson and Leah Durham: Unity College.