LETTER TO THE EDITOR
I HAVE to smile when I read of the trouble the oak trees are causing Desailly St, Sale, residents between Macarthur and Stawell Sts.
We live in Desailly St, north of Stawell St and opposite Brennan Park.
People will be familiar with the plane trees that border the park.
Some of these trees are about 100 years old, and during autumn, we are faced with the job of cleaning up the leaves in our yard and on the footpath.
Before moving to Desailly St, we were aware of the mess the trees made, and we chose to live with them.
More than 50 years ago, the residents in the area raked the leaves into the gutters and burnt them.
They had no other way of removing them.
Not only are the leaves a problem during autumn, but for nine months of the year broken branches, twigs, immature leaves, seed pods and large pieces of bark, end up in our yards and gutters.
About Easter each year, we completely cover our front fence and gate to keep the leaves out when they fall in April, May and June.
With the strong winds, we end up with leaves against our fence, as well as in our yard, as it is not possible to stop them completely coming in.
They fly over the fence, over the house, in the spouting, under the house and all through the garden.
It is a major task to clean them up.
Along the outside of the fence, the leaves can lay up to a metre high and we, along with the help of good neighbours, clear the path and nature strips.
When the leaves are wet, they are a danger to pedestrians, especially the elderly and parents with prams.
To collect the leaves, we use huge plastic bags (queen size mattress bags) and can collect at least 10 for each season.
All our neighbours do their share and dispose of the leaves as best they can.
Many times we have arranged for the street sweeper, for whose help we are thankful.
We also have help from the council and appreciate their assistance also.
Councillor Darren McCubbin suggests a green bin service for the residents of Wellington Shire.
When we do a major cleanup (almost once a week onto the path), it would require six bins.
To the person who organised the petition, move down one block and you'll know what it's like to live with the leaves.
I note that further north in our street, there are no complaints about their oak trees.
These houses also cop plane tree leaves if the south-westerlies beat us to the clean-up.
I would also like to mention we suffer with runny eyes, noses and cough from the leaves.
In Melbourne, plane trees are now being removed a result of people suffering with asthma.
I do fail to understand why council is still planting the trees.
Not only is our area a mess, but so is the Bunnings corner, Gippsland Centre, Raymond St, Raglan St and Guthridge Parade - to name a few.
The oak trees and the plane trees in Desailly St do look splendid when they are all green, and yes, they do create great shade the summer for everyone to enjoy.
Perhaps a stronger pruning of the Brennan Park plane trees would be of benefit to the residents.
Let me say that picking up a broom and a rake never hurt anyone.
Beats sitting in the armchair.