Your questions about the Woodland and Biodiversity Project

What types of tree are you planting?

We will be planting a mixture of up to eleven different native broadleaf tree species all of which can be found growing wild in established woodlands around Essex.

Why are they so small?

It has been proven that small whip plants of this size stand the best chance of getting established over the long term.

Why so many plastic tubes?

Each young tree will have a bamboo cane to support it and a biodegradable plastic spiral guard to protect it against rabbit damage.

Will all the young trees survive?

There is likely to be some loss of trees either through periods of dry weather or by vandalism or other damage.

What if some of the trees die?

If too many of the trees fail to thrive, we can return in the next planting season and replace those that have failed.

Will you be watering the young trees?

When planting trees on such a large scale it is not financially viable to undertake a watering programme – we are choosing the best species at the best size to achieve establishment.

What will happen to all the bamboo canes and plastic guards?

After two or three years the trees will no longer need these for support and protection so we will remove them for reuse or recycling.

I love trees, can I help in caring for the ones you have planted?

We would welcome your help – you can register your interest by emailing

Will you be planting more in the future?

We have plans to plant more every year until 2023.

Can I help with tree planting?

We would love you to get involved – you can register your interest in attending one of our planting days.

Do you work with local groups and experts when identifying sites for planting?

We work with local ward councillors and community groups wherever possible on many aspects of the project. We also consult with professional bodies such as the Woodland Trust, Essex Wildlife Trust and Colchester Natural History Society when identifying planting sites. In fact the trees we will be planting this year are being provided free of charge by a nationally recognised and government supported body, the Woodland Trust.

Are you looking at other ways of nurturing and restoring natural habitats, alongside tree planting?

We are considering lots of ways to do this. Following advice from Essex Wildlife Trust and Colchester Natural History Society we have changed the scope of the project significantly in the last year to embrace biodiversity, as well as ensuring sites for tree planting are as suitable as is possible, and to allow for the increasing risk of hot and dry Springs. Find out more about the natural regeneration that forms a key part of our approach.

What skills do you have in-house to support work following the declaration of a climate and biodiversity emergency?

We have a highly qualified internal team working on or advising the Project Team including staff with degrees in Wildlife Conservation, Landscape Management, Arboriculture, Horticulture, Biology, specialising in Conservation & Ecology, Environmental Science and Environmental Assessment and Management.

Page last reviewed: 18 December 2020