Trees For Life’s Annual Distribution Day

Pictured from left to right are Joe Demasi, Rob Smith, Teresa Nurmela, Sue Milne, Gillian Taylor and Mark Nurmela.

Hundreds of people came together for the environment last Sunday, most of them volunteers who will now be spending the next six months growing native seedlings in their backyards as part of Trees For Life’s growing season.

Sunday was Trees For Life’s annual Distribution Day. At 45 depots throughout South Australia, volunteers take delivery of propagation materials including soil and seed, to grow the seedlings.

This year more than 850 volunteer growers collected more than 8000 boxes of material.

Locally, Heathfield and Aldgate depots distributed boxes to volunteer growers.

Mt Barker couple Mark and Teresa Nurmela have been running the Aldgate depot for the past 11 years, at the Aldgate Primary School.

And each year they have a loyal band of local volunteers helping them, many of whom have also been helping annually for years.

“Joe Demasi in particular is caretaker at the school and has always been there for us – he really is the joint manager of the depot and we wouldn’t be running it as well without him,” Teresa said.

“We also need to thank Aldgate Primary School as we use their facilities and the kids always take an interest in finding out what that big mound of soil is for, when it arrives every year. Joe got the kids to work out that on average we distribute around 400 boxes (it has been as high as 560!) which equates to at least 20,000 trees hopefully grown and planted each year – so 220,000 over our 11 years of volunteering!”