Last week a National Tree Improvement Strategy for Britain and Ireland was launched by the Future Trees Trust.
The launch of the strategy, attended by Sylva’s CEO Gabriel Hemery (whose early career helped initiate broadleaved tree improvement in Britain), marks a significant milestone in the work of the Future Trees Trust.
The vision of the strategy is:
“Through selection and breeding of a wide range of tree species capable of thriving in UK conditions — broadleaves and conifers, natives and exotics — we aim to promote economic value, genetic diversity and species resilience, producing trees with good vigour and timber quality, showing resistance to known pests and diseases, and able to withstand the seasonal and long-term climatic variations, whilst ensuring that all selected material is available to all interested parties.”
The strategy describes over the medium term an intention to have productive seed orchards for ‘new alternative’ conifer and broadleaved plus trees. In the longer-term the aim is to use genomic selection aided by DNA markers to promote important economic traits of key species. Alongside the science, the strategy highlights key elements under Governance, Funding, Intellectual Property and Communication.
The National Tree Improvement Strategy is now available to download.