Reconstitution and Underplanting Scheme for Ash Dieback

Ash Dieback (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus, previously known as Chalara fraxinea) is a fungal disease was first identified in 2006 and has since spread rapidly across the majority of Europe. Its main victim is common ash but other ash species are also susceptible. Ash Dieback has a few symptoms in which it can be identified, these include:

  • Foliage wilt and discolouration.
  • Brown/orange discolouration of bark with diamond shape.
  • Dieback of shoots, twigs or main stem resulting in crown dieback.
  • Necrotic lesions and cankers along the bark of branches or main stem.
  • Epicormic branching or excessive side shoots along the main stem.

Discolouration of bark (left) and dieback of shoots (right). Source: Teagasc

The Reconstitution and Underplanting Scheme was launched by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine in 2013 and was later reviewed in 2018.

This scheme is available to the owners of ash plantations which are affected by ash dieback. The stand of ash must be at least under 17 m high and 18 cm in diameter for it to be eligible.
There are three ways the funding can be used, these include:

  1. Site clearance or partial clearance – this is the removal of ash trees in advance of either reconstitution or under planting and associated operations to enable to site to be reconstituted or to allow for underplanting
  2. Reconstitution – this is the replacement of all trees with an alternative species, all GPCs are available to the landowner.
  3. Underplanting – this is the partial replanting of a partial ash felling with an alternative species, all GPCs are available to the landowner.
The input of a professional and registered forester is required to both complete the application form and to commence reconstitution and underplanting works. SWS Forestry have registered foresters located nationwide who can give a professional assessment of the site and advise on its suitability. Not only will we advise on what’s best for the site, but we will complete all paperwork and maps associated with the application. All queries are welcome.

We also have two in-house ecologists who can assist with the application and pre-screening report if the need arises.

Click here to view our team.

One of our registered foresters will assess the site to confirm the presence of Ash dieback disease and for its eligibility for either underplanting or reconstitution. This is done by a stand inspection and a damage level assessment. After which one of our registered foresters will notify the Forest Service, handle all paperwork and liaise with contractors to transform your stand of ash into a healthy alternative stand.
Contact SWS Forestry on 1800 928 900 or and we can discuss the scheme with you in more detail and can assess your potential site(s) for suitability for the scheme.