Moderators: Random Orbital Bob, nev, CHJ, Noel, Charley

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By phil.p
#1305430
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At Westonbirt they've just marked all the Fraxinus species with yellow bands so they stand out and make people aware of the problem - this one is just outside the entrance. They are a little uncertain how to proceed but it seems they will all be felled, as besides all else apparently they become brittle and therefore more dangerous to fell - obviously they have to be felled carefully and not just dropped because of the damage done to adjacent trees. There is one fairly large one lying with the small branches removed with explanatory information on it. Such a shame, such beautiful trees.
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Westonbirt is absolutely stunning. :shock: I might have been more awestruck than some as living in W. Cornwall we have very, very few really large trees - the wind gets them first. £10 admission or £39 per annum - anyone who lives within reaching distance should go. They're developing a woodworking area where they hope to show the end products of timber they can trace back to seed, and are/were running a chair making course - it'll be interesting to see how that develops.
On the first weekend of the month they do a tour of the propagation unit in the mornings - I did this one as well as a guided tour of one of the woods in the afternoon - the tours are free, the guides are volunteers and are very knowledgeable.
A wonderful place, I shall do the 400 mile round trip again. And again. :D
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By AndyT
#1305444
Agreed!
Glad you made it and had such a good day. Just to hammer home how amazing some of their trees are, here are photos of some of my favourites, which some people might have seen before.


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Phil, will you be coming back for the autumn colours?

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By phil.p
#1305474
No, I won't go back this year. I was lucky, I got there before the autumn rush and still saw some of the colour. Spring, hopefully. :D
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By CHJ
#1305509
Yes these infectious 'diseases' cause a devastating change and loss to the visual environment. Never envisioned that I would see such as the Elms virtually disappear from the landscape, the thought of all the Ash going the same way is very saddening.
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By CHJ
#1305512
October can be very colourful, being a Westonbirt friends member & reasonably close means we can spend many an afternoon comparing the seasons.
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The above and many more images are in a thread from October 2009.
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By Benchwayze
#1305513
I wonder how much of this is due to a 'shrinking world', as international trade intensifies and insects find their way in? Or will they insist on blaming Global warming?
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By CHJ
#1305518
Benchwayze wrote:I wonder how much of this is due to a 'shrinking world', as international trade intensifies and insects find their way in? Or will they insist on blaming Global warming?


Wish we had the strict controls that New Zealand and Australia impose on imported products likely to transfer undesirable pathogens, I know our close proximity to the European and Scandinavian land mass & the fact we are on several large bird migration itineraries does not help.
At least stricter Import checks would help avoid wholesale shipment of infected stock and consumables that can, and have, arrive via the container load.
By treeturner123
#1305523
Hi All

If only it were only Ash and Elm. But there are issues with Horse Chestnut and Oak as well.

I agree about stricter checks on imports. And the question must be asked as to why we have been importing Ash saplings from Holland etc when Ash grows so prolifically almost everywhere!!

Phil
By phil.p
#1305535
Going into Oz I got pulled up for an orange in my luggage. My wife had picked up a bag she didn't realise was rubbish and put it in my bag. They got it with an xray machine. I said well, you've found one, you'd better go through the bag for another as there were two. She duly emptied everything out and found the other, which had obviously got behind something that hid it. Going into NZ the sniffer dogs were everywhere - I thought initially they were drug dogs but no, they were after fruit and veg.
I do wonder about things like importing ash saplings -why on earth do we import stuff that can be easily grown here? It's not as if the Netherlands is a cheap labour third world Country.
Last edited by phil.p on 09 Sep 2019, 18:32, edited 1 time in total.
By phil.p
#1305536
treeturner123 wrote:Hi All
If only it were only Ash and Elm. But there are issues with Horse Chestnut and Oak as well.

And larch, and olive and kauri elsewhere.
By Chris152
#1305542
Apparently it can spread without importing ash saplings:
'[...] on the 7 November, we published an evidence summary compiled over the past week by a group of experts convened by Defra’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Professor Ian Boyd. The scientific advice from that group is that where the disease is present in the natural environment, this is likely to be due to spores blown in on the wind from continental Europe.'
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/writ ... ee-dieback
By Tris
#1305605
According to one theory I have heard it was introduced to Europe when Ash saw logs were imported from Korea by a Polish furniture factory and the spores were on the bark. That would support the global trade idea but is it likely whole logs would be preferred to processed timber?
We've had to take out several hundred young trees in a plantation here and several mature specimens look like they'll be coming down this winter :evil:
By lurker
#1305609
I frequently drive past a tree supplier.
They call themselves a nursery on the internet, but in reality are a fast turn round warehouse.
And often there is a foreign artic unloading, I assume all of their stock comes from abroad.

Why the hell we cannot grow our own trees and shrubs is beyond my understanding.
By Woody2Shoes
#1305611
Tris wrote:According to one theory I have heard it was introduced to Europe when Ash saw logs were imported from Korea by a Polish furniture factory and the spores were on the bark. That would support the global trade idea but is it likely whole logs would be preferred to processed timber?
We've had to take out several hundred young trees in a plantation here and several mature specimens look like they'll be coming down this winter :evil:


I think it's not at all impossible that whole logs could be im/exported, but since the pathogen is spread by the tiniest particles, I guess it could just as esily be transmitted on wrought timber too. I think that increased demand for firewood to feed urban logburners and activities like flailing hedgerows are good new ways to spread disease around the place. I remember being fumigated - along with the whole plane cabin - before disembarking in Australia some decades ago.

On the plus side - I think that there is genetic diversity amongst the ash trees in the UK (which was not the case with elms which were very closely related to each other.) - we have it quite bad here in Sussex, but healthy trees stand along side poorly-looking ones - giving hope that some will survive. I'm not a fan of prophylactic felling, but obviously safety is important. Touch wood (pun intended) we have some elms getting to quite a good size in a hedgerow - which is very good news - I've never seen a mature elm tree (although I gather they have some very fine specimens in Australia, exported by Victorian-era pommies). I think that the beetles can only fly a certain distance so I'm hoping there are none near enough.