DENR National Capital Region and the Pasig City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) unveiled on Friday, 8 July 2022, the 36th and 37th Heritage Trees of Metro Manila at Rizal High School in Pasig City.
The regional office was represented by Assistant Regional Director for Management Services Manuel T. Escasura; Conservation and Development Division (CDD) Chief Aida E. Esguerra; and Protected Area Management and Biodiversity Conservation Section (PAMBCS) Chief, Carlito P. Castañeda and his staff. The local government, on the other hand, was represented by Pasig City Administrator Atty. Jeronimo Manzanero and Pasig CENRO Allendri B. Angeles.
The Heritage Trees of Pasig City—both Acacia Trees (𝘈𝘭𝘣𝘪𝘻𝘪𝘢 𝘴𝘢𝘮𝘢𝘯)—are said to predate the establishment of the school in 1902. Known by teachers and students past and present as “Batibot”, the Acacia trees serve as a reminder to the rural and humble past of Pasig City, once the capital of Rizal Province prior to its integration with the National Capital Region in 1975.
Standing more than a hundred years old, the trees provided shelter and protection to the number of students who have studied and graduated since, becoming an integral part of the history and heritage of the learning institution.
Trees that are treasured by the people not only for their ecological value but their historical significance is the target of the Heritage Tree program of DENR National Capital Region. Under the program, “trees that are old, rare, native, or endemic, with a minimum girth or circumference of 100 centimeters and measures one-half meter above ground” are designated as Heritage Trees by the regional office from nominations made by host community. Trees included in the program receive special attention and protection from a pool of foresters of DENR National Capital Region to ensure they live longer and enjoyed by generations to come.