Forestry groups take action after conifer disease discovered in three nurseries

Two tree experts have issued an urgent warning following nursery stock infections from a disease they have labelled Britain's biggest blight to conifers.

Sightings of red band needle blight prompted Forestry Commission Scotland and Confederation of Forest Industries to swing into action.

Infections at two nurseries, Christie Elite Nursery and Christies of Fochabers, were found in August. This followed clean bills of health at both sites on earlier inspections. A third site, the commission's Newton Nursery, has also been hit.

The "position statement" sets out the measures Forestry Commission is taking for the blight, which it calls the most significant disease of coniferous trees in Britain.

Infected and nearby stock amounts to five-million pine plants at these nurseries. Other stock further than 550m away from the nearest known infection can be traded as normal.

The statement describes the background of the disease: "Present since the 1950s, it was first recorded in Scotland in 2002 and has caused extensive damage including mortality to some Corsican and Lodgepole pine stands."

Growers have agreed to destroy nursery beds with confirmed infection and managers are keeping an eye on risks.

Meanwhile, scientists are looking at the distribution of the two fungal pathogens - Dothistroma septosporum and Dothistroma pini - that cause the disease.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Chainsaws - Improving performance

Chainsaws - Improving performance

Battery chainsaws offer many advantages while innovative technology shelps the latest petrol models meet emissions standards, writes Sally Drury.

Chainsaws tested and reviewed: battery v petrol

Chainsaws tested and reviewed: battery v petrol

How do the latest battery models shape up against new petrol chainsaws when tested at Bridgwater College? Sally Drury reports.

Business planning: The labour challenge

Business planning: The labour challenge

With staffing becoming increasingly problematic, Neville Stein looks at the alternatives to finding good recruits.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Custodian Awards

Jeremy Barrell On...

Jeremy Barrell

Tree consultant Jeremy Barrell reflects on the big issues in arboriculture.

Products & Kit Resources