Garden owners could help repopulation efforts

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Garden owners looking to revamp their green space could possibly help with efforts to repopulate the UK with one of its best-loved native trees.

According to the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), efforts are underway to restore the British elm to its former glory.

The species was brought to its knees by Dutch elm disease in the 1960s, with only a handful surviving.

Scientists are keen to find out why some had resistance to the illness while others did not.

They will use the research to help rebuild the elm population and plan to plant as many as 10,000 trees around the UK.

Saplings have been propagated from the surviving trees and some have been sent to 250 schools around the country, where they will be planted in an effort to start the repopulation.

Meanwhile, the RHS has revealed that an orchard has begun to grow traditional heirloom varieties of Cornish apples in an attempt to revive the species.   - 18 March 2010
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Garden owners could help repopulation efforts

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