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Article by Caroline Knight | 29th November 2018

Marking National Tree Week

National Tree Week runs until 2nd December and is the UK’s largest tree celebration – and a chance to remind ourselves of the value of the biggest plants on the planet. First initiated in 1975, the week also marks the start of the winter tree planting season.

The event is a great opportunity for communities, both nationally and locally, to come together to do something positive for their local treescape, especially as trees are coming under increasing threat from disease. This is a hugely worrying problem because trees give out oxygen, soak up carbon dioxide and pollution and can also play a significant part in flood prevention and stabilisation of air temperature. Not to mention the value in terms of biodiversity and visual enhancement. 

The Forestry Commission has reported that three new tree species have tested positive for the Ash dieback fungus that is found in the common ash, Fraxinus excelsior. The extended family of affected trees include:

• Mock privet

• Phillyrea

• Chionanthus

This was just one aspect of trees that was discussed recently at the annual regional forum for South East tree wardens when tree experts and wardens from all over the region convened to compare stories, refresh knowledge banks and share information.

The Tree Warden Scheme is a national initiative that enables people and communities to play an active role in conserving and enhancing their local trees and woods.

• Visit treecouncil.org.uk

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