Protecting Cree Valley Trees for the future at Kew’s Millenium Seed Bank
Over the coming weeks Cree Valley Community Woodlands Trust will be collecting seed from our woods as part of the a national project to protect the UK Trees. We are a partner in the UK National Tree Seed Project, which has been set up by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank, with funding from players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
Tree seeds collected as part of the project will be safely banked in the underground vaults of Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank – forming the UK’s first national collection of tree seeds. These can then play a vital role in conservation work to protect UK trees and woodlands, including agaisnt pests and diseases such as ash dieback. The collections, and associated data, will be available to researchers working on solutions to tackle the many threats facing our woodlands.
Clare Trivedi, UK National Tree Seed Project Co-ordinator at Kew Gardens, says “Building up our seed collections of the nation’s favourite and most important tree species is a vital step in combating the multiplying pests and diseases which threaten to alter our landscape dramatically. We are delighted that Cree Valley Community Woodlands Trust is supporting this project to help us ensure that seeds from across the UK are collected and conserved.”
The UK National Tree Seed Project was launched in May 2013 with the aim of securing genetically diverse collections of UK native trees and shrubs. The species target list takes into account factors such as conservation status, prevalence in the landscape and vulnerability to pests and diseases. The target species include many which underpin the UK’s wider plant and animal diversity, as well as supporting woodland industry, tourism and recreation, such as ash, juniper, Scots pine, alder, beech, silver birch and yew.