FIRST CITY PARK TREE PLAN WALKABOUT

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Looking after the undisturbed remnants of the forest that used to cover all of Nairobi and still found in City Park is a priority for the rehabilitation of City Park.

On 24th January, we held a Botanical Forest Walk and later on a meeting at The Murumbi Memorial Garden that brought together 8 experts and representatives from National Museums of Kenya, Friends of City Park, Brackenhurst Botanic Garden and Nairobi City County Government. The walk would contribute to developing a rational tree plan for Nairobi City Park through assessment of the current flora.

During the walkabout, we observed a healthy forest area with seedlings and undergrowth sprouting in the undisturbed sections while the frequently and heavily used sections of the forest had no undergrowth. The idea of designating recreational areas and zoning off conservation areas was consensual and would serve to minimize disturbance and degradation of areas with high biodiversity value.

Fig. Section of the forest with no undergrowth [Photo: B.Khan]

Suggestions on the conservation of these species included management of invasive species, commemorative or ceremonial tree planting as a fundraising means, zoning of conservation areas, upgrading current nurseries and training the staff at City Park on tree identification, propagation, gardening and developing good tree nurseries.

It was encouraging to find that many of the flora reported in Plant Diversity Survey at City Park by Malombe et al (National Museums of Kenya, 2010) were still present in bloc 2 & 3 that was walked through.

Fig. Blocs used to conduct Plant Diversity Survey [Photo: National Museums of Kenya]

by Benard Koros & Baldip Khan

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