Westonbirt arborist heads to South Korea to collect seeds in wild
9:00am Monday 9th September 2013 in Latest News
The Forestry Commission's National Arboretum at Westonbirt will participate in a trip to South Korea this month, to collect seed from the wild for the arboretum.
Arborist Tomas Dewey will travel to South Korea for nine days, with the aim of collecting seed which will be propagated at Westonbirt.
The trip is just one of several overseas collecting trips which the arboretum has participated in in recent years with the aim of diversifying Westonbirt’s tree collection.
Arboretum director Simon Toomer said: "New trees and shrubs are the life-blood of the arboretum and seed collected from naturally-growing trees is invaluable for collections with scientific objectives such as Westonbirt.”
The list of trees targeted for collection in South Korea includes ash species native to Asia, for which special permission has been sought.
These will add to the arboretum’s existing collection of this genus and may prove valuable in helping develop an understanding of Chalara fraxinea, or ash dieback disease.
Mr Dewey will be joined by staff from the Forestry Commission's National Pinetum at Bedgebury, and staff from Wakehurst Place, home to Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank, where some of the collected seed will also be deposited.
This team will be accompanied by staff from Korea National Arboretum.
Mr Dewey said of his trip: “This is a fantastic opportunity to work with other botanical collections in the UK and forge relationships with our contacts overseas. I’m looking forward to bringing back some interesting species for Westonbirt’s tree collection.”
His trip has been generously funded by a private donor. You can keep up-to-date with his preparations and progress on the Korea 2013 seed collecting blog http://koreaseed2013.blogspot.co.uk/
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