Replanting on the Malvern Hills to combat ash dieback disease - The Worcester Observer

Replanting on the Malvern Hills to combat ash dieback disease

Worcester Editorial 13th Apr, 2024   0

CUSTODIANS of the Malvern Hills have been planting shrubs and small trees on a section of the countryside to combat the removal of ash trees infected with disease.

The Malvern Hills Trust have carried out the replanting on the lower slopes of British Camp after a large number of ash trees adjacent to the popular car park were removed for public safety.

In total, 40 new shrubs have been planted in the gaps created by the felling to improve the site for local wildlife.

The trees which were felled were infected with ash dieback disease.

Ash dieback, which was first identified in the UK in 2012, has spread across the country and causes the wilting of leaves, shoots to die back and often the death of the tree.

Infected trees can be found across the trust’s estate and tree management works are undertaken each winter for safety.

Beck Baker, community and conservation officer at Malvern Hills Trust said: “An infection from this fungus causes the decline of trees and, in 80 per cent of cases, the death of infected ash trees.

“For public safety, we removed the most severely infected trees at this popular visitor location.”

The trust said the planting of new hazel, guelder rose, alder buckthorn and dogwood shrubs will increase diversity within the woodland providing food and shelter for local species.

This part of the Malvern Hills is home to a host of native wildlife including several bat species for which the woodland habitats are essential for roosting, feeding and moving through the landscape.

Small open areas created by the felling have also increased the amount of light reaching the woodland floor.

The trust hopes this will encourage woodland flora such as bluebells and wood anemone to bloom in future years. The roots of the new shrubs will also help to stabilise the bank and the plants will slow water run-off from the hill into the car park.

Malvern Hills Trust is now calling for donations to help with the ongoing costs of dealing with tree safety works as a result of ash dieback disease.

Visit for more information and to donate.


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