AS many as 250,000 trees across the city could be affected by a deadly disease.

Ash dieback, a disease that has been spreading across Europe and killing off ash trees, has now reached Glasgow.

And council bosses are today beginning a survey of trees in Queen’s Park to see how to deal with the issue.

The disease makes the trees prone to collapse and so prevents a safety issue to park goers.

Council bosses say the situation could take up to 10 years to deal with.

Glasgow Times:

A Glasgow City Council spokesman said: “Unfortunately the ash dieback disease that has spread across Europe in recent years has reached Glasgow and is now affecting ash trees across the city.

“There are a number of ash trees within Queen’s Park and we are seeing signs that some of those trees are displaying symptoms of the disease.

“A full survey of the ash trees in the park is about to begin but it is sadly inevitable that many of those trees will eventually have to be removed for safety reasons.

“The disease significantly weakens ash trees and makes them prone to collapse, which presents a real danger to people and property.

“The work in Queen’s Park will inform how we approach the ash dieback issue in other parts of the city.”

Glasgow has around two million trees with around 12.5% of these believed to be ash trees.

It was recently announced that an ambitious tree planting scheme would be undertaken across the Glasgow City Region.

Around 18 million trees will be planted over the next decade, increasing woodland cover from 17% to 20% .

Ash are one of Britain’s 32 native species of trees and the third most common across the country.

The ash dieback fungus is described as a “highly infectious, devastating disease” by Kew gardens.

It was first described in Poland in 1992 and has since, travelled across Europe, by wind carrying fungal spores and by human movement.

It is thought to have been in the UK since 2002.

Wilted leaves fall to the ground and rot, causing mushrooms to sprout that then spread the spores of the disease.

As the infection spreads through the trees, the supply of nutrients from the tree roots is cut off and the tree might become dry and crack.

This means they are prone to falling over and can pose a danger.

Ash is used in building tools, firewood and furniture.

In 2012 the UK government imposed a ban in importing the tree in a bid to stop the spread of ash dieback.

One study estimated that the cost of felling and replanting affected trees across Britain could be as high as £15billion.

From today people in Queen’s Park will begin to see posters going up on affected trees and across the park explaining the work being undertaken.

Around half of all trees in the city are on private land and so businesses and residents are being urged to survey their own trees and check if they are affected.

The council spokesman added: “Many of the city’s trees are on private property and so we are urging residents, businesses and other organisations to check to see if ash trees in their gardens or grounds are also affected.

“Tree planting is an integral part of the city’s effort to tackle the climate emergency and we will be looking at a replacement programme for the lost trees in due course.”