The disease is identifiable by the wilt of early leaf growth. Infected trees will also show diamond shaped lesions around twigs or branches that will expand as the fungus grows. Young twigs may split around the infected area and the bark may discolour to an orange-brown colour.
Tree Council director-general Pauline Buchanan Black said:"By helping the Forestry Commission to keep tabs on the spread of this particular disease, everyone can help"
"However, there are other day-to-day things that all young trees need to maintain health. Tending broken or damaged branches, loosening ties and removing unnecessary stakes as well as clearing weeds and grasses from the base of young trees can make the difference between survival and loss.
"If it’s your tree, then secure its future with a few moments of care; if it’s someone else’s tree, let them know their tree may need attention.
Suggested director of programmes Jon Stokes: "Visually check trees in your street if you live in towns, and out on walks in the country, and let the landowner or council know if trees aren’t coming into leaf or if you can see other significant problems."
"Meanwhile, if you have trees of your own, now is the time to administer some basic care so that they have the best chance of a healthy future."