It has been confirmed in the last few days that a new disease affecting Ash trees has been found in growing trees in East Anglia, previously it had only been seen in recently imported saplings from the Netherlands. The disease called Chalara fraxinea has killed hundreds of thousands of trees in mainland Europe, it is currently not known how this recent outbreak arrived here, it may have arrived on the wind or been carried by birds. Chalara fraxinea causes the leaves to wilt and fall off and can lead to the whole tree dying. It is going to be very difficult to track the diseases progress as the leaves will all have fallen off soon anyway as it is Autumn. Ash is the most common tree on Wenlock Edge, growing and regenerating naturally in large numbers as conditions here are ideal for the trees growth.
A ban on imports of nursery stock is expected to begin tomorrow but i can't help but think it may be too little too late, as i have said it has been around for years across Europe but still we allowed imports of young trees from these countries!
I guess that we will have to cross our fingers and hope for good news and lots of healthy leaf growth in the Spring.