A new £1 million fund to increase and diversify the tree planting stock in England has been announced by the Forestry Commission.
The Tree Production Innovation Fund aims to encourage the development and adoption of new technologies and ways of working.
It will support nurseries to increase and diversify the domestic supply of young trees to facilitate an increase in tree production while maintaining high levels of biosecurity, helping to reach planting targets.
In May, the government launched the England Trees Action Plan, which aims to treble tree planting rates in England by the end of this Parliament to meet the UK’s overall target of planting 30,000 hectares per year.
Applicants can apply for up to £200,000 in grants, until 8th September 2021, to support projects designed to address one or more of the following challenges identified through stakeholder engagement as barriers to tree production.
Forestry Commission Chair Sir William Worsley said: “I fully believe forestry needs to embrace new technology and in turn we need to develop technology that can support the future of forestry. We need new and innovative ideas to drive this change and I’m pleased this £1 million funding will support nurseries to increase and diversify domestic tree supply.
“By enhancing the quantity, quality and diversity of planting stock available now, it will help our trees to be healthy and resilient to the impacts of changing climate and increasing threats from pests and diseases into the future.”