Symbolic trees take root at Inchmarlo

Residents, homeowners and staff at Inchmarlo Retirement Village near Banchory have marked The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee by planting two symbolic trees.

As part of a project spearheaded by the local branch of Children 1st, two Gingko saplings have been sponsored and planted at the front of Inchmarlo House, representing a significant addition to the plant and tree collections in the 100-acre grounds.

The planting also acknowledged The Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC), a unique initiative to mark the Platinum Jubilee which encourages the sustainable planting of trees as a legacy of the event which will benefit future generations.

The Gingko trees are among 20 which were gifted to Children 1st and are currently seeking sponsors to help boost the charity’s post-pandemic coffers.

From left: Inchmarlo Retirement Village Director Richard Skene, Alison Skene, Jim Wilkie, Jane Grieve and Charles Skene.

The planting was carried out by Inchmarlo Retirement Village Founder Professor Charles Skene CBE and his wife Alison, under the guidance of head gardener Jim Wilkie.

The Ginkgo tree became widely regarded as a symbol of hope after one example of the species survived the bombing of Hiroshima, Japan in 1945.

It was thought that, in the immediate aftermath, nothing would grow for decades but within a few months green shoots appeared from the remains of the ancient Ginkgo Tree in the city centre.

Since then, seeds have been gathered each autumn and sent around the world as a sign of peace and hope. The Gingko’s stunning fan-shaped leaves are popular in designs all over the world, including the 2021 Children 1st Banchory Bangle 2021, designed and given to the charity by Dr Malcolm Appleby MBE.

Commenting on the planting of trees at Inchmarlo Retirement Village, chairperson of the Deeside committee for Children 1st Jane Grieve said: “Our charity continues to play a critical part in supporting children and their families across North East Scotland.

"We are therefore especially grateful to all our Ginkgo Tree sponsors. At Inchmarlo these two specimens have been well-placed as beautiful reminders of all that they represent and, as they flourish, our work will continue to help children in the area.”

Former chairperson of the committee, Nicky Bradford, said: “It is particularly fitting as we emerge from a pandemic that our work continues to help children and their families at such a critical time.

"We hope that these exceptional trees will not only add colour and vibrancy to our surroundings, especially in the wake of the storms we endured last winter, but will also play an important part in the work we do for children in the North East of Scotland.

"We are thrilled that they will be planted amongst the specimen trees and plants that make up the gorgeous gardens at Inchmarlo.”

Professor Charles Skene added: “We are delighted to support the local Children 1st committee in this special project.

"Our new trees are a significant addition to the outdoor environment which is enjoyed by those who live and work at Inchmarlo Retirement Village.”

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