Leslie Ngo started going around her neighbourhood with a watering can in June to provide plants with a drink and help them survive the recent heatwave. (Leslie Ngo/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

LETTER: Food for thought on watering street plants from a Langley letter writer

Willoughby resident took a watering can around the neighbourhood to help plants survive heatwave

Dear Editor,

Remember that heatwave back in June where temperatures soared up to 45 celsius? That was similar to the temperature of Las Vegas.

At a time like that, one would go and grab a nice cup of cold, refreshing drink to quench their thirst.

While we are able to do that, the plants around can’t. Although some plants are able to get water because some homeowners water them, others are not so lucky.

Street vegetation, common stratified property grounds, and those in some parks don’t get water except by rain and after the heatwave a long period of drought persisted where many plants started to perish.

Feeling like I should do something, I decided to volunteer my time to water them. So I got my watering can, filled up with water, and headed to trees and shrubs that are in need of water on public property and on common grounds in my townhouse complex and water them.

It felt great to help plants get water when they are showing signs of thirst. I don’t water them to see them thrive, just to help them get through the drought until enough rain can take over.

I first got this idea when I was browsing the City of Vancouver’s website and came across a message encouraging residents to water street trees in front of their homes, and I thought what a great idea.

You may say it isn’t my job to water plants on public property but if you are able to do a favour for the plants, you have access to plenty of water, have the will and heart, then why not be the bridge that connects the water to the thirsty plants?

As the issue of climate change persists we need to do as much as we can to limit our environmental impacts and take care of our planet. Reducing our time driving gas-powered vehicles, buying sustainable products, taking part in environmental initiatives, and advocating for environmental policies and regulations are good ways to do so.

Even smaller choices like eating less meat products can also be part of the solution.

Watering public vegetation may seem like extra work, but is a great way to showcase you care about your surroundings while feeling good doing so.

As droughts are expected to come more frequently I encourage those who have empathy for our plants to water them on public grounds while we fight against the causes of climate change. Even watering that one tree or shrub right in front of your home is better than nothing.

Leslie Ngo, Willoughby

• READ MORE: Langley Township plans to fight heat by adding trees

• READ MORE: Heat drives street trees to shed leaves early


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Langley Advance Times