Dis­ease wip­ing out ash trees

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Business Kent Update -

The owner of a coun­try es­tate is warn­ing that the spread of a dis­ease af­fect­ing ash trees could de­stroy swathes of the English land­scape.

Ed­ward Barham, of Hole Park Es­tate, Rol­ven­den, says that Chalara, or ash dieback, is rav­aging his trees and that the deadly fun­gus that causes leaf loss, crown dieback and le­sions in the bark, also threat­ens in­sect life.

Mr Barham said: “Ash dieback is so preva­lent that I haven’t even had a visit from the Forestry Com­mis­sion to con­firm the out­break on the es­tate. They know that the dis­ease is wide­spread across the Weald and all over the coun­try.

“Spores have been blown across the English Chan­nel from Europe and are killing trees in east Kent.

“I’m hor­ri­fied at how many of my ash trees have been af­fected and the num­ber is re­ally no­tice­able.”

He added: “A huge amount of wildlife from moths and but­ter­flies to birds are de­pen­dent on ash trees and could per­ish with­out them.”

The landowner says he is plan­ning to fell the dis­eased trees, some of which may grow back again from the stem but he says that the county could be fac­ing a loss equiv­a­lent to the spread of Dutch elm dis­ease in the 1970s, which wiped out mil­lions of trees.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.