UKTC Archive

Re: UK tree fatality

Subject: Re: UK tree fatality
From: Bill Kowalczyk
Date: Jan 03 2018 10:30:29

On 3 Jan 2018, at 01:46, Wayne Tyson <wt750mv@xxxxxx.com> wrote:

Thank you, Will! I wonder if the soggy soil creates poor root development
conditions for some species?

Wayne

PS: I also wonder if the wet conditions accelerate root decomposition and
reduce soil strength? Of which species does the woodland consist? Are they
naturally-occurring or planted? (Especially with respect to the tree that
failed?)

Hi Wayne,

Questions, questions….

As Will said, the whole area is the flood plain to the river and probably 
only about 3ft above the water table.  Four years ago we experienced 
extensive flooding in many parts of the UK and I believe that particular road 
was under water for some time (and not for the first time).  That could 
certainly have contributed to its demise but, the report said the stem 
snapped rather than failing at the rootplate.

I can’t really provide specific details, although I lived in Romsey for 25 
years until leaving in 2005 and I’m very familiar with that road and its 
environs, I don’t go there very often these days.  I don’t remember the 
shelter-belt (a narrow strip of trees rather than woodland) being planted and 
am fairly certain it was there and well-established when I arrived nearly 40 
years ago. 

It is made up of a mix of native species but also some ‘exotics’ including 
numerous Horse chestnuts along that road, particularly as you go a bit 
further around the corner, some of which are very large indeed.  I don’t know 
if they grow in California (it’s a relation of your Buckeyes), but over here 
they have really short-grained timber and are very susceptible to brittle 
fracture under loading.

As to "how long do dead trees tend to stand in this area?” 

If I knew the answer to that I’d have made a fortune by now and be long 
retired and be lying in a hammock in the Caribbean, not sat at a computer 
putting off work in a grey and damp January in the UK (actually its bright 
and sunny at the moment so I think I may take a walk into town and have a 
coffee)!

Regards,

Bill



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