The Woodland Trust is urging farmers and landowners in the Eastern Claylands to join the fight to protect the landscape from the increasing effects of ash dieback and other pests and diseases by planting trees.
This is the third year that the charity is offering fully subsidised packs of 50 saplings to local landowners. The packs contain oak, hornbeam, field maple, wild cherry and crab apple – species which have been carefully selected to best replace trees lost to disease.
More than half the trees in the Eastern Claylands, which covers large parts of Essex and Suffolk, are found outside of woodlands in hedgerows along roadsides and on farmland. Ash is the second most common species in the area after oak.
Ash dieback has been confirmed in every county in England and represents a significant threat to the Eastern Claylands. Combined with the effects of acute oak decline and pollution, this might mean up to two million trees disappearing from the landscape over the next 10-15 years.
Outreach adviser for the Woodland Trust Edwin van Ek said:
“Ash dieback is a real threat to our landscape. There are signs of it everywhere.
“Our tree packs give landowners the opportunity to pre-empt any losses while also providing a host of other benefits, such as improving resilience to climate change and offering havens for wildlife. Trees are also a great way of making land more productive, whether that be by attracting pollinators, improving drainage or soil stability, or providing shelter for livestock and crops.”
This season’s packs are available at no cost, thanks to funding from Trailfinders, on a first come first served basis.
A total of 600 packs are available and up to two packs can be requested per landowner for collection in Stonham Aspal and Langham in December, or Margaretting and Takeley in February.
For more details visit www.woodlandtrusttickets.cloudvenue.co.uk and select “tree packs collection”.