Britain is being urged to take action to help reduce the spread of ash dieback disease, which is rapidly spreading through Europe and has reached the UK.
Solid wood flooring brand, 1926, urges the public to take measures to prevent the spread of ash dieback disease in the UK and fully supports the government’s proposed actions to do so.
Earlier this month government officials met to discuss possible measures that could be taken to stop further spread of the disease. The steps included educating and involving members of the public in helping to spot and control the disease.
Ash dieback disease is currently threatening Ash trees in the UK and appears to be spreading rapidly. If allowed to continue, the disease will have a serious impact on British wildlife, as well as the wood manufacturing industry.
Members of the public can identify ash dieback easily by looking out for dark patches on leaves, twigs and branches. These patches will eventually develop into cankers, which are dead areas on larger branches and the trunk of the tree. They may also see dead or dying leaves and traces of fungus towards the base of the tree.
The public should also be aware of affected leaves when raking their lawn or pavements. Any infected leaves should be buried to prevent them being carried away by the wind. Gardeners and walkers should also wash their shoes after treading through any foliage.
There have now been 155 separate infected sites across the UK* and it now affects 90% of ash trees in Denmark **.It is feared that it could have the same impact as Dutch elm disease, which wiped out the vast majority of elm trees in the UK in the 1970s.
This month the disease was found to have spread to trees in the South East of England after previously being thought to be confined to a nursery in Buckinghamshire. As concern about the disease grew, it was found to have spread to ash specimens in the North, Wales and Scotland.
The disease, officially named Chalara fraxinea, affects the growth of ashes, by causing leaf growth and death to the branches at the crown of the tree. This usually results in the death of the whole of the infected specimen. The disease takes the form of a fungus, which grows on the leaves of trees and is spread when an ash loses its leaves naturally and these are carried by the wind.
Suspected cases of ash dieback should be reported to the Food and Environment Research Agency on 01904 465625 or the Forestry Commission on 0131 314 6414.
Notes to editors
1926 is a UK retailer of wood flooring and other joinery products. It stocks engineered ash flooring, by Barlinek and has recently launched a campaign to help educated members of the public about British woodlands and green spaces. More details can be found here: http://www.1926woodflooring.co.uk/acatalog/media.html