Yes, you have probably heard the sad and terrible news about Ash Dieback Disease which is unfortunately spreading across the country. The disease causes leaf loss
and dying back of the crown in ash trees. The fungal disease, Chalara Fraxinea has already meant the felling of 100,000 trees in Britain in an attempt to stop it spreading.
Ash dieback has devastated between 60% and 90% of ash trees in some areas of Denmark and as the first reported cases in England have been in the south east
(East Anglia in particular), it is believed that the fungus has been blown over here by the wind. Imports to nurseries are also blamed for the spread from Europe.
The threat is a serious one, not only to the trees but to the animals and plants which live in ash trees. Britain has 80 million ash trees so the need to prevent the spread is paramount.
You can help by using http://ashtag.org/ on your smartphone to report cases of suspected infection in your area.
Infected ash trees are recognisable by lesions on their bark, dieback of leaves at the tree’s crown, and leaves turning brown – though experts say the arrival of autumn makes the latter harder to accurately spot.
You can find more infomation and things to do to help here http://www.guardian.co.uk/
The governmount has also announced a ban on imports starting 29th October.
Loosing trees is always worrying and sad. Dutch Elm disease has caused the loss of some 25 million elms in Britain since the 1960s. The October storm of 1987 uprooted and blew down an estimated 15 million trees, the 6 most famous of which being 6 of the 7 Oak trees of Sevenoaks in Kent.
Unfortunately this disease is going to change the British countryside considerably.