A fungus called HymenoscyphusFraxineus is what causes Ash dieback. The fungus attacks the tree and causes leaf loss, crown dieback and bark lesions, once infected this will then be fatal to the tree, causing it to weaken and be more susceptible to other fungi, disease and pests.
The first case was reported in Buckinghamshire in 2012 and we knew very little of how this will affect our ecosystem and what to do to stop the spread of this disease. The government and Landover’s have tried to defend and aid the trees by planting new Ash, building hedgerow borders and scientists working hard to discover what makes some Ash trees especially new ones more tolerant to the fungus attack.
The Food and Environment Research Agency (FERA) scientists in 2012 confirmed a number of cases in Suffolk and Norfolk which we not related to the first Buckinghamshire case earlier in that same year and since further cases along the East and South of the country have been confirmed.
All trees suspected of Ash dieback are to report to FERA and more than 300 sites have been identified.
Symptoms to spot
- Dead or dying tops of trees
- Wilting leaves, most visible in spring and early summer
- Lesions and cankers on stems/branches/shoots/fruiting bodies