Bournemouth council on lookout for deadly Ash Dieback disease
Bournemouth Council are on the lookout for Ash Dieback disease - which has been causing widespread damage to Ash tree populations across Europe.
The council's park and gardens team, along with volunteer tree wardens are checking trees across the borough for signs of the deadly disease.
Gary Josey, Service Director for Parks at Bournemouth Borough Council said: "The Forestry Commission has alerted us to the potential threat of this disease, which causes leaf loss and crown dieback, and can lead to tree death.
"Young trees are more significantly affected and as a result we will not be planting any further Ash trees in the borough until the scope of the risk becomes clearer.
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"We are frequently inspecting our Ash trees and thankfully we have no signs of the disease in Bournemouth. However, all staff working in the open spaces have been asked to be vigilant and report any possible cases to the tree team for further investigation."
Ash Dieback disease, a fungus known as Chalara Fraxinea, was discovered earlier this year in the UK in young trees imported from the continent.
The basic symptoms of the disease include early leaf curl, dead branches and lesions to the trunk.
Dr John Morgan, Head of the Forestry Commission's Plant Health Service, said: "I would once again urge woodland managers and other tree professionals to familiarise themselves with the symptoms, inspect their Ash trees frequently for signs of ill health, and report any suspicious cases to us."
More information on Ash Dieback disease can be found at www.forestry.gov.uk/chalara