Managing tree disease
Britain’s woodlands are under threat from a virulent infection P.ramorum, which was first discovered in Britain in 2002. Since then it has infected a wide range of plants and trees (mainly Japanese larch) across the UK and, attempts to stop its spread, have resulted in a wide spread felling programme with the loss of millions of trees.
The first signs of P.ramorum on Clinton Devon Estates land were in 2009 and we took immediate action by felling five hectares of Japenese larch. In February 2012, we felled another 10 hectares of Japanese larch at Otterton Hill on the Clinton Estate in East Devon. Our 1,900 hectares of woodland are under continual scrutiny - although the disease is hard to spot from the ground until the more advanced stages. Aerial digital photographs, provided by the Forestry Commission as part of their routine monitoring, has enabled us to spot the signs earlier and take prompt action to try and halt the progress of the disease. The outbreak of P.ramorum has resulted in a radical reassessment of our forestry management policies, especially in deciding which species we use to replant cleared areas.