Views wanted on a national tree of Scotland

The Scots Pine is one of a number of trees contending for Scotland's National Tree
The Scots Pine is one of a number of trees contending for Scotland's National Tree

The Scottish Government is inviting the people of Scotland to submit their views on a national tree. 
A consultation on the proposal, which began this week, will run for three months.
Managed by Forestry Commission Scotland, the consultation will tease out whether the public would like a national tree and if so, which species.

The idea of a national tree of Scotland came from Alex Hamilton, a member of the public who brought his campaign to the Scottish Parliament through a petition and received cross-party support from MSPs.

Launching the consultation at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Paul Wheelhouse, Environment and Climate Change Minister said: “People in Scotland have a great affection for trees.

“Our woodlands and forests are part and parcel of our heritage and shape our often rugged, green and stunning landscapes and they play a vital role as green lungs, storing carbon and improving air quality.”

He continued: “A national tree could be a powerful symbol to help raise the profile of trees and their contribution to so many aspects of today’s society.

“At no time has it been more important as some of our woodlands are currently under threat from a number of serious tree health problems.

“We would like to hear from as many people as possible, both young and old, on whether they would like a national tree of Scotland.

“If the answer is yes, then also please tell us which species you think would be best and why.”

To give views on a national tree, log on to the consultation’s main website at www.forestry.gov.uk/scotlandsnationaltree

The consultation will end on December 3rd with the outcome being announced early in 2014.
Further details will also be available through www.facebook.com/enjoyscotlandsforests or www.twitter.com/fcscotlandnews or join in the conversation at #scottree.
Alternatively, views are welcome atscotlandsnationaltree@forestry.gsi.gov.uk .