Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

SOTA’s Angsana tree to be removed due to decay

SINGAPORE — The towering Angsana tree beside the School of the Arts (SOTA) will be cut down on Sunday (Jan 21) after significant decay and a cavity were found at its base – but not before students and staff of the school bid a proper farewell to it.

SOTA’s Angsana tree to be removed due to decay

The towering Angsana tree beside the School of the Arts (SOTA) will be cut down on Sunday (Jan 21) after significant decay and a cavity were found at its base (pictured). Photo: SOTA

SINGAPORE — The towering Angsana tree beside the School of the Arts (SOTA) will be cut down on Sunday (Jan 21) after significant decay and a cavity were found at its base – but not before students and staff of the school bid a proper farewell to it.

The SOTA community will gather near the tree on Friday evening (Jan 19) to create a mural of leaf prints to commemorate the Tree of Knowledge or SOTA Tree, as it was affectionately called.

The tree, estimated to be about 40 years old, was preserved and incorporated into the design of the campus. SOTA moved to the Bras Basah site in 2010.

That year, a huge branch fell off and the Singapore Civil Defence Force was called, said SOTA in a media statement.

In 2013, an independent arborist found signs of decay at the tree's base during an inspection. The school installed non-invasive cables the following year to support and hold up the tree. SOTA closely monitored the tree's health and pruned it regularly to reduce the load on the tree trunk.

But last week, the arborist reported significant decay and a cavity at the tree's base. It will be removed for the safety of students, staff and the public, said SOTA.

The school will create art from parts of its trunk and a new sapling will be planted at a later date, at a location to be determined.

"We had hoped to keep the tree standing on our steps for as long as possible, but there is only so much we can do," said SOTA principal Lim Geok Cheng. "While it saddens us to bid farewell to the Tree of Knowledge, we hope that its legacy lives on and a new sapling will be planted."

Angsana trees grow up to 40m in height and were introduced to Singapore in the early 19th century, according to the National Library Board's Infopedia site.

The fast-growing trees were widely planted during the initial phase of Singapore's Garden City campaign launched in 1967, but lost favour as their drooping branches required frequent pruning and are prone to breaking in heavy rains.

Read more of the latest in

Advertisement

Popular

Advertisement

Stay in the know. Anytime. Anywhere.

Subscribe to get daily news updates, insights and must reads delivered straight to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, I agree for my personal data to be used to send me TODAY newsletters, promotional offers and for research and analysis.

Aa