Not ex­tinct after all!

Country Life Every Week - - Town & Country -

ASPECIES of elm be­lieved to have been ex­tinct in the Bri­tish Isles has been dis­cov­ered grow­ing in the gar­dens of the Queen’s of­fi­cial res­i­dence in Scot­land. the two Went­worth elm trees, each about 100ft tall, are among the largest in the gar­dens of the Palace of Holy­rood­house in ed­in­burgh. De­spite their vast size, it was only dur­ing a re­cent sur­vey of the gar­dens that they were iden­ti­fied as the species Ul­mus Went­wor­thii Pen­dula (left), the last re­main­ing spec­i­mens of which were thought to have suc­cumbed to the rav­ages of Dutch elm disease in the late 20th cen­tury.

‘that’s the most strik­ing thing about this story,’ en­thuses Dr Max Coleman of the royal Botanic Gar­den ed­in­burgh (rbge). ‘It seems very odd on the face of it that th­ese mas­sive trees, which are prob­a­bly the most pho­tographed trees in the grounds of the palace, have gone un­recog­nised un­til now.’ It’s still un­clear where the trees came from. Ar­chiv­ists from the royal House­hold the­o­rise that the trees may have been given to Holy­rood by the rbge and that their sib­ling at the botanical gar­den died. ex­perts are now look­ing into ways of prop­a­gat­ing the rare spec­i­mens, with a view to pre­serv­ing the species. James Fisher

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.