Saving the second Preston Twin

Peter Small, Arboricultural Manager for CityParks, reports:

We have conducted the planned works on the Preston Park Twin yesterday with regards to last summer’s elm disease infection. Our in-house team has removed part of the crown where the infection was identified and also some reduction work to lessen the weight stress upon the hollow stem. It has changed the appearance of the tree but is essential and will be followed up with some heavy watering in the summer and another pruning operation next winter as we look to manage the Twin for both elm disease and as a fragile ancient tree. In the short term, we must try to enable the Twin to recover from last summer’s infection which is the greatest current threat to the tree’s continued survival, which has resulted in some significant loss of parts of the canopy.

We will be monitoring the Twin throughout the summer for any further signs of infection but as explained at the time we will need to do this for subsequent years before knowing if the remedial work was successful in stopping the disease from spreading throughout the entire tree. We are committed to doing all we can as losing this tree would be devastating for all BHCC Arboriculture staff. However, we are hopeful the early intervention and the remedial works will give it a good chance of surviving.

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