Norway maples should make like a tree and leave Halifax

A video guide to the city’s most controversial tree.

Over the last two days, HRM workers have been planting 52 new street trees along Jubilee Road in the south end. It’s all thanks to the Urban Forest Master Plan, which adopted by Regional Council in 2012. That sylvan blueprint is behind the city’s current goal to increase the number of trees planted in HRM this year by 50 percent.

“Thirteen hardy tree species have been selected for planting and, in years to come, will beautify the neighbourhood and branch out to form a protective canopy cover,” reads a press release from HRM.

One species that very much won’t be planted on Jubilee (or anywhere else in HRM) is the Norway maple.

The imposter maple tree dominates these urban streets. Of the 200 species of trees planted in HRM, by far the most popular is the invasive Norway maple. In some parts of the north end, it makes up 65 percent of the tree canopy.

But for being everywhere, there’s still a lot most Haligonians don’t know about the Norway maple. That’s why the good folks at PLANifax partnered with The Coast to tell you everything you never knew about Halifax’s most unwelcome tree.

Thankfully, the city has learned its lesson and is now creating a more diverse biosphere. The list of trees HRM is planting this year include:

Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)
Red Maple (Acer rubrum)
Basswood (Tilia americana)
American Elm (Ulmus americana)
Red Oak (Quercus rubra)
Bur Oak (Quercus macrocarpa)
Paperbark Maple (Acer griseum)
Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum)
“Purple Robe” (Robinia)
European Beech (Fagus sylvatica)
Black Walnut (Juglans nigra)
Sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua )
Ironwood (Ostrya virginiana )

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