Why are we doing it?
Cuttings taken from mature trees that appear to have resisted Dutch elm disease for over 60 years have been skilfully micro propagated. The resulting saplings are being distributed to hundreds of schools, community groups, local authorities and private landowners who have signed up to take part in the 'Great British Elm Experiment'
"We want to interest a new generation in the elm, so much a feature of the British life and landscape for centuries and also to try and find out why some trees survived Dutch elm disease. So many have disappeared over recent years that we can only hope to replace some. But rather than just give up and forget the elm, we think it's worth a try." - David Shreeve, Director, The Conservation Foundation.
Height, girth, biodiversity and any signs of disease are being recorded and it is hoped that in time a new generation of elms will become established throughout the UK and a new generation of young people will be encouraged to have an interest in elms and biodiversity. The project also heralds hope for the White-letter hairstreak butterfly that relies on the elm for food.
This exciting project was launched during the UN's International Year of Biodiversity. Partners in the project include MicroPropation Services, Millhouse Nurseries, Alba Trees and Trees Direct.
How do I take part?
Each small tree is accompanied by a certificate showing its parent tree and type and schools will also receive a poster with growing tips and project ideas.
Ready to buy now? For private orders of up to 10 saplings, please go to Trees Direct.
The Great British Elm Experiment is able to run thanks to the kind support of the following charitable trusts:
Tubney Charitable Trust, Berkeley Reafforestation Trust, Ernest Kleinwort Charitable Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation, Scotshill Trust, Yorkshire and Clydesdale Bank Foundation, Chapman Charitable Trust