“Buriton’s Trees and Woods: past, present and future” – talk by Forestry Commission expert

About seventy people came to this meeting and heard about challenges of the past and risks in the future.

Mark Broadmeadow, the Forestry Commission’s Principal Advisor on Climate Change designed a special talk for his audience in Buriton in October.

Referring to historic records from the Commission’s library at Alice Holt, Mr Broadmeadow explained how the hills above Buriton have been a living research area (starting in the 1920s/30s) as different species of trees were planted on what he described as “very challenging soils”. The forests had been amongst the first to be planted by the country’s new Forestry Commission after the shortage of timber at the end of WW1.

Looking to the future he explained how the Forestry Commission is now managing trees, forests and woodlands so that they are fit for the future as part of a nationwide response to climate change. Many species that are currently less common in British woodlands may be better adapted to future conditions, so a wider range of tree species is being planted. 

With a range of threats from different pests and diseases this new approach should give woodlands the best chance of being able to survive and thrive in 50 years’ time. 

But Mr Broadmeadow urged people not to bring any plant material (including grape vines etc) back from foreign holidays to plant in their own gardens. This could bring huge risks to trees all across the country.

The talk also referred to ash die-back and there is more information about this topic on this community website here: http://www.buriton.info/news/more-ash-dieback-identified-buriton