EbonyThe Landscape and Ecology Mitigation Programme (LEMP) team reports that a number of important endemic plants have been stolen from the tree nursery at Piccolo Hill. This serious matter has been reported to the Police and is currently under investigation.

The public is reminded that plants at the nursery are being grown as part of the environmental mitigation for the Airport Project. The specific plants that have been stolen are for the Terminal forecourt area – where larger, more mature plants are needed, to create an area for the Island to showcase its endemic natural heritage for those arriving and departing the Airport. This will be part of our visitors’ first impression of St Helena as they walk out of the Terminal.

The theft of the plants has implications for the Airport Project. With the opening of the Airport just months away, it is not possible to grow replacement plants of the same size as those which have been stolen, and therefore smaller, younger plants will have to be used.

Endemic plants take several months and dedicated hard work to grow, from the initial collection of seeds, through potting out of germinated seedlings, to careful watering and weeding. It is very disappointing for people’s hard work to be treated with disrespect in this way.

The public is reminded that the tree nursery at Piccolo Hill is a place of work and is off-limits to the general public. Signs are in place and the public is asked to adhere to these.

For further information please contact LEMP Project Manager ,Ross Towers, at the Access Office, Jamestown, Tel: 22721.

A photo of the endemic Ebony is attached to this press release.

SHG

31 July 2015

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