Friday 14 August 2015

Borders Tree Planting Grant

Ash Dieback, Dutch Elm disease and Phytophthora in larch; these are just a few examples of some of the recent tree diseases and pests that have had devastating impact on our native tree flora across the UK. But when you consider what impact this might have in light of the vastly reduced number of trees, across what was once a (famously) historically wooded part of Scotland a worrying picture begins to form.

It is important to try and bolster the number of native trees across our landscape in order to try and compensate for losses such as these. And to try and increase the diversity of trees across the Borders, Scotland and the UK in order to provide the best possible chance for survival against the increasing list of potential issues that may affect our native trees both now and in the future.

So how can you help? Well, earlier this year the Borders Tree Planting Grant was released. This grant is available to any organisation or individual (i.e. schools, community groups, private land owners and farmers) that can suggest a planting project that is less than 0.25 hectares and that will enhance the biodiversity and landscape of the Scottish Borders.

Planting my first tree in Scotland at the Borders Tree Planting Grant launch

Funding assistance can be given in two ways;
·         Up to 100% of material costs (trees and protection) from private applicants (i.e Farmers, landowners and individuals). VAT excluded if reclaimable.
·         Up to 100% of material and labour costs for non-profit making organisations (i.e Schools and community groups). Including VAT if not reclaimable.
Please note that the planting of hedging is not eligible under this grant and that the maximum grant available is £1000 per applicant per year.

The grant scheme is currently open to applications all year round and will be available for three years. It is a great way for us to encourage the planting of small numbers of trees in areas of the Borders that are visually noticeable, important for the future survival of British trees and beneficial to our wildlife.

The Borders Tree Planting Grant project is part funded by Forestry Commission Scotland, Woodland Trust Scotland, Scottish Borders Council and Fallago Environment Trust and is administered by both myself here at the Borders Forest Trust and my colleagues at Tweed Forum. 

The Borders Tree Planting Grant team and landowners at the launch day

For application forms and information on the Borders Tree Planting Grant please see our website or contact me at

Woodland Habitats Officer 

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