If more Canberrans could collect a cooling bucket of water from their morning shower and pour it on the distressed trees on their local nature strip, ACT City Services Minister Chris Steel would be delighted.
"Despite recent rain, many trees are still struggling and will require extra care, with hotter and drier conditions expected to be the new norm," Mr Steel said.
Such is the level of concern that watering schedules have been reduced from six-weekly intervals to every four weeks, and two extra water trucks have been added to specifically hydrate 6000 stressed mature trees and remnant native/registered trees identified as most at risk of not surviving after a fierce summer.
Areas targeted for additional attention are Eddison Park in Phillip, City Hill, Ainslie Avenue, Limestone Avenue, Telopea Park, Black Mountain Peninsula, Hilltop Reserve in Crace, and the Commonwealth Avenue clover leaf trees north of Albert Hall.
Mr Steel's directorate is also stepping up compliance and education for people who park their cars on nature strips, a practice which compacts and damages tree roots.
"We're encouraging Canberrans to water any struggling street trees nearby by pouring on a bucket of tank water, or grey water from the shower," Minister Steel said.
Questions posed by the Greens in the ACT Assembly found that the number of street and park trees around Canberra is declining by around 3000 per year.