The Queen and Prince Charles to plant tree at Balmoral ahead of Platinum Jubilee

The Queen and Prince Charles have stepped out for a joint engagement at the Balmoral Estate as they planted a tree to mark the start of the official planting season for a special initiative called the Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC).

Joined by schoolchildren from nearby Crathie Primary School, the pair planted a copper beech tree at the Balmoral Estate’s cricket pavilion. 

Her Majesty dressed down and kept warm for the occasion in one of her signature headscarves, and donned a pair of sensible wellies. 

The initiative comes ahead of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, which she will celebrate next year, becoming the first British monarch to achieve the milestone since taking to the throne in 1952.

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles walk to the Balmoral Cricket Pavilion to mark the start of the official planting season for the Queen's Green Canopy (QGC) at the Balmoral Estate

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles walk to the Balmoral Cricket Pavilion to mark the start of the official planting season for the Queen's Green Canopy (QGC) at the Balmoral Estate

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles walk to the Balmoral Cricket Pavilion to mark the start of the official planting season for the Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC) at the Balmoral Estate

The royal duo were joined by schoolchildren from nearby Crathie Primary School as they kicked off the initiative, which aims to create a legacy to the Queen's 70 years on the throne

The royal duo were joined by schoolchildren from nearby Crathie Primary School as they kicked off the initiative, which aims to create a legacy to the Queen's 70 years on the throne

The royal duo were joined by schoolchildren from nearby Crathie Primary School as they kicked off the initiative, which aims to create a legacy to the Queen’s 70 years on the throne

According to the QGC, the Queen has planted 1,500 trees around the world during her 70-years on the throne

According to the QGC, the Queen has planted 1,500 trees around the world during her 70-years on the throne

Her Majesty donned one of her trademark headscarves for the occasion, dressing down in a mackintosh coat and a pair of sensible wellies

Her Majesty donned one of her trademark headscarves for the occasion, dressing down in a mackintosh coat and a pair of sensible wellies

 The monarch appeared to be in good spirits as she made her first public appearance since July 23, when she marked the start of her annual Summer holiday at Balmoral

The QGC is a UK-wide Platinum Jubilee initiative which will create a lasting legacy in tribute to the Queen’s 70 years of service to the nation, through a network of trees planted in her name. 

Taking a hands-on approach, her Majesty and her oldest son took a pair of spades to the ground as they planted the tree. 

As they filled in soil at the base of the tree, Prince Charles reportedly joked: ‘Let’s hope it will survive.’

Digging deep! The Queen and Prince Charles got hands on today while planting a tree in Balmoral as part of the Queen's Green Canopy initiative

Digging deep! The Queen and Prince Charles got hands on today while planting a tree in Balmoral as part of the Queen's Green Canopy initiative

Digging deep! The Queen and Prince Charles got hands on today while planting a tree in Balmoral as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative

The Queen's Green Canopy initiative is urging people to follow the Queen's lead, and plant their own trees across the nation

The Queen's Green Canopy initiative is urging people to follow the Queen's lead, and plant their own trees across the nation

The Queen’s Green Canopy initiative is urging people to follow the Queen’s lead, and plant their own trees across the nation

'Let's hope it will survive': Prince Charles reportedly made a quip about the tree's chance of survival as the pair planted it

'Let's hope it will survive': Prince Charles reportedly made a quip about the tree's chance of survival as the pair planted it

‘Let’s hope it will survive’: Prince Charles reportedly made a quip about the tree’s chance of survival as the pair planted it

The initiative, which has its own Twitter account, says the tree planted today joins 1,500 the Queen has planted around the world throughout her 70-year reign. 

It is calling on people across the nation to follow her lead, and plant their own trees, using the slogan: ‘Plant a tree for the jubilee.’ 

It encourages people to plants their trees between October and March, to give them the best chance of survival.   

According to QGC, today’s event also ‘marks the unveiling of the QGC’s education programme, which includes a special Jubilee edition of the RFS Junior Forester Award’. 

The award aims to give children and young people of all ages an insight into the skills needed for a career in Forestry, as well as equipping them with the practical ability to assist in woodland management in their schools and local communities. 

While on the grounds of the 50,000-acre Scottish estate today, the Crathie Primary School pupils explored Balmoral’s woods, taking part in nature projects as part of the scheme.

They also presented the Queen with a card they had made for her, featuring hand drawn illustrations of trees.

Children from Crathie Primary School presented the Queen with a card during the ceremonial tree planting earlier today

Children from Crathie Primary School presented the Queen with a card during the ceremonial tree planting earlier today

Children from Crathie Primary School presented the Queen with a card during the ceremonial tree planting earlier today

The Queen was spotted interacting with local schoolchildren as she looked at the special card they had made for her

The Queen was spotted interacting with local schoolchildren as she looked at the special card they had made for her

The Queen was spotted interacting with local schoolchildren as she looked at the special card they had made for her 

Some of the local pupils show off the card they presented to the Queen today, as part of the QGC event which precedes the Platinum Jubilee next year

Some of the local pupils show off the card they presented to the Queen today, as part of the QGC event which precedes the Platinum Jubilee next year

Some of the local pupils show off the card they presented to the Queen today, as part of the QGC event which precedes the Platinum Jubilee next year

Today was the Queen’s first public appearance since July 23rd, when she marked the beginning of her annual Summer holiday at Balmoral.

This year saw the monarch holidaying for the first time without late husband Prince Philip, following his death in April.

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