Muswell Hill beauty spot endangered by rogue planting

CONSERVATIONISTS are warning that rogue tree planting could be endangering a Muswell Hill beauty spot. Young hazels, blackthorn, beech and hornbeam have been discovered in the Queen s Wood nature reserve in an area that was recently coppiced, following a

CONSERVATIONISTS are warning that rogue tree planting could be endangering a Muswell Hill beauty spot.

Young hazels, blackthorn, beech and hornbeam have been discovered in the Queen's Wood nature reserve in an area that was recently coppiced, following a grant from the SITA Trust.

Member of the Friends of Queen's Wood Rebecca Dowman said introducing unchecked new plants into the ancient woodland could introduce disease and upset the area's ecological balance.

She said: "The recent coppicing was planned carefully with the borough conservation officer, following recommendations from a panel of ecological experts and a felling licence from the Forestry Commission.

"One of the aims of the project is to document which plants occur naturally. The species planted were completely inappropriate for the wood, particularly the beech and blackthorn.

"Hornbeams, meanwhile, have been regenerating in Queen's Wood perfectly well by themselves for hundreds of years and do not need to be supplemented from stock of unknown provenance.