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David Humphries

Chalara fraxinea - Generic thread

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The only ash I have (South Wales) with no (or very few) leaves at the moment have dieback. Your ash may be different, get someone who knows to check, but I'd fear the worst...

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Yesterday I had to fell a reasonable sized Ash tree that was showing advanced signs of ADB. I had heard that the disease shortens the wood fibres and makes them weaker. When I looked at the hinge I would normally expect on a healthy Ash to see menacing looking pointy needles of fibre sticking up but on this one the fibres were indeed shorter and blunter. I certainly wouldn’t want to fell one with a significant lean in the wrong direction.

We have noticed the grain is not as fibrous as it was when felling and they break away from the stump sooner, also spoke to a friend who does a lot of roadside work for County Highways and he said the same thing
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Just to add a completely new dimension into the mix, I came across this for the first time today.

The background story is. 

I was asked to plant several types of Ash from various parts of the world as a controlled experiment to monitor species resilience to ADB on an FC site known to have ADB present.

I have been monitoring them for the last 5 years, until now, all good.

Today I inspected some of the Syrian Ash, as I approached I noticed the dreaded tell tale sign, die back of the crowns resembling hedgerow trees.

What I found surprised me and I have never seen it in 26 years of Forestry. These are native Hornets completely ring barking  and stripping bark causing the tips to die back, anyone seen this habit before, and why only the Ash?

0B2B7FD7-A9E5-4339-AF6F-096269D5B5CB.jpeg

Edited by The avantgardener
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I've not seen hornets stripping bark, and we get quite a few hornets around here.

 

A quick google suggests it's common, I'll have to keep an eye out for the damage as I did notice hornets taking an interest in a particular ash tree.

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On 18/09/2019 at 11:04, AA Teccie (Paul) said:

Thanks Paul. Have heard that hand cutting should be last resort. Can't remember where I saw the info so this is great and clarifies what I am saying to people I work with as we are increasingly seeing and removing trees that i suspect have it. 

I would expect that the use of MEWP is even more imperative at risk assessment stage if felling is not an option. 

 

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1 hour ago, Konstantly said:

Thanks Paul. Have heard that hand cutting should be last resort. Can't remember where I saw the info so this is great and clarifies what I am saying to people I work with as we are increasingly seeing and removing trees that i suspect have it. 

I would expect that the use of MEWP is even more imperative at risk assessment stage if felling is not an option. 

 

Absolutely (re using a MEWP where cannot use a machine nor fell at ground level) and our ‘pending’ guidance aimed primarily at dismantling works states such.

cheers

Paul 

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49 minutes ago, AA Teccie (Paul) said:

Absolutely (re using a MEWP where cannot use a machine nor fell at ground level) and our ‘pending’ guidance aimed primarily at dismantling works states such.

cheers

Paul 

There seems to be a focus down in the SE on using excavator mounted tree shears to deal with dismantling large plantation/roadside Ash with ADB, the Woodland Trust had a recent demo using a Westec Woodcracker 350 shear on a 14 tonne machine.

I am not totally convinced that the power of the grab may not just shatter the limb apart depending on how brittle the timber has become.

Some of the firewood merchants down here are starting to reject Ash with ADB, the processor is cutting the log and dropping it into the pit to be split, but the log is simply smashing into pieces when pushed against the splitter.

Edited by The avantgardener

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On 22/09/2019 at 08:17, AA Teccie (Paul) said:

Absolutely (re using a MEWP where cannot use a machine nor fell at ground level) and our ‘pending’ guidance aimed primarily at dismantling works states such.

cheers

Paul 

Thanks Paul. I also read that ground level felling should be approached with caution, especially with the use of wedges.  

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