Like so many conservation charities and garden bodies, it has found the use of plastic tree guards, to help protect saplings before they take root, to be incompatible with a duty to reduce the unnecessary use of plastic.
Now, at Hardcastle Crags in West Yorkshire, cardboard tubes have been trialled with mixed success – they biodegrade quickly but, at the same time, they leave saplings still vulnerable to animal damage.
Yet, given the onus on the planting of new woodland areas ahead of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, the National Trust does deserve credit for experimenting like this in order to help the country see the wood from the trees over plastic guards and a need to find more sustainable alternatives – at the grass-roots.
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