Tree Wardensbranching out tree planting grants

As lockdown begins to ease slightly across the UK, we’ve been asked what this might mean for Tree Warden related activities.

The health and safety of our volunteers remains our utmost priority and so we urge everyone to continue to stay safe and follow current government guidelines.
The rules are evolving all the time and are due to be revised again at the end of June, but currently they state that in England:

  • We should continue to limit our contact with others, especially for anyone over 70 or clinically vulnerable, and staying at home is the easiest way to do this.
  • We can now spend time outdoors in groups of up to six people from different households, following social distancing guidelines, if not shielding for medical reasons.
  • It is still not possible to meet indoors or with larger number of people so in-person meetings indoors are not permitted.
  • When seeing friends and family outdoors, we should follow the guidelines on staying safe outside your home. Most importantly, this includes the key advice that you should stay two metres apart from anyone outside of your household. Face coverings can help us protect each other and reduce the spread of the disease.
  • We acknowledge that the rules round social distancing and resuming activities is different for Tree Wardens in Scotland and Wales and we urge those of you in these two countries to ensure that you check with the Scottish and Welsh government guidance :
  • For the devolved nations, view the Scottish government guidance or the Welsh government guidance

How can Tree Wardens continue to help trees in their community whilst working within the rules?

There are still many ways you can help trees in your community whilst still taking extra care and following the guidelines:

Tree Care – Watering young trees in your area (find advice here), carry out weeding, additional mulching and checking tree protection and replacing where needed

Monitoring tree health on regular walks e.g. oak processionary moth (don’t get too close) and ash dieback – taking photos if you can is a great way to record what you see

Monitoring planning applications – via your local planning portal keep an eye on trees and development

Keeping an eye out for suspect tree activities and reporting incidents to your local Tree Officer, suspected illegal tree felling can also be reported to the Forestry Commission if your local council doesn’t have a tree officer. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/report-suspected-illegal-tree-felling

Start Planning – Seed Gathering and Tree Planting activities – grants are available from The Tree Council

Speak Up for Trees – advocate for trees through online forums, write articles for your local community newsletter

Enjoying the plentiful fruit this spring – the cherries seem particularly abundant this year and make wonderful jam! Other suggestions and recipes can be found on our Hedgerow Harvest website.

Carrying out surveys e.g. the People’s Trust hedgerow survey, or Forest Research online mapping.

Brushing up on your tree knowledge with free online training e.g. Arb Association applied tree biology courses.

If you have any other suggestions, please get in touch with us at treewardens@treecouncil.org.uk or share them in our private Tree Warden Facebook Forum.