SEOUL, April 6 (Korea Bizwire) – The Seoul Metropolitan Government is making efforts to preserve and protect the city’s older trees. A total of 11 trees have been designated as natural monuments due to their historic value, and 212 trees have been designated as protected trees by the city.
Many trees are being planted on Arbor Day, but preserving old trees is as important as planting new ones. To protect old trees holding stories from the past, Seoul has designated 212 trees as protected trees according to the Forest Protection Act.
Some of the trees designated as protected trees are over 800 years old. The oldest tree designated is the ginkgo tree in front of the grave of King Yeon San Gun. The 830-year-old tree is 25 meters tall, and has a circumference of 10.7 meters.
There are three more ginkgo trees in Siheung-dong which are 830 years old, and a 830-year-old juniper in Seocho-dong.
A 900-year-old rattan at the prime minister’s official residence and 700-year-old juniper on the grounds of Changdeok palace have also been designated as natural monuments for their high ecological value.
As the trees have been standing for centuries, they hold many stories and have witnessed many historical incidents. Many have survived the many wars that have scarred the Korean peninsula.
Seoul is investing significant financial resources in the maintenance of the valuable trees. However, city officials say that they have difficulty preserving the trees, as they cannot stop citizens from breaking branches or making holes in the trees. The emphasize that protected trees should be seen as cultural assets and treated with care.
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