The Plant Health Service has to date intercepted 62 cases of Oak Processionary Moth (OPM) in England, Scotland and Wales – all outside the control area, and all on imported trees.
At risk are ‘larger’ oak trees (defined in this case as those over 8cm in girth at 1.2m above the root collar) that have been imported from Germany or the Netherlands since September 2018.
This pest has spread significantly in the past year. The Plant Health Service (APHA and Forestry Commission) is taking swift action to control this outbreak, and we urge all LI members to assist by:
- specifying in accordance with new statutory restrictions brought into force on Monday 15 July
- specifying ‘Grown in Britain’ where possible, and in accordance with the LI’s Biosecurity Toolkit for Landscape Consultants
- checking any at-risk trees for OPM and report any findings through TreeAlert (if you suspect OPM, contact your local APHA Plant Health Inspector)
- ensure that these trees are regularly inspected on a continual basis
- ensure that clients are aware of the risk of OPM and appoint/instruct landscape consultants accordingly
More information and guidance at forestresearch.gov.uk.