Highland Glen home of giants

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24 MARCH 2014NEWS RELEASE No: 16217

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Reelig Glen, a Forestry Commission Scotland site near Inverness, is home to four of the tallest trees in Britain – one of which is also the tallest of its kind in Europe!

Everyone knows the famous Dughall Mor – a Douglas Fir that at one time held the title of Britain’s tallest tree - but it’s been pipped by another Douglas Fir some 50m further down the hill, which standing at an incredible 66.4m tall, is the tallest conifer in Europe.

Giles Brockman, Environment Manager for the Commission’s team in Inverness, Ross & Skye, said

“We’ve always known that we have some of the finest air and richest soil up here, but we’re beginning to think there might be something special about the waters in the Moniack Burn, too!

“It’s quite something to have four of the tallest trees in Britain and to have one of those also hold the European title is pretty amazing. The glen has obviously provided some protection from the harshest of the elements to give all of these trees a good solid start in life, which has let them come on in leaps and bounds.

“But….trees keep growing so this is an annual championship contest based on how well each tree grows each season: inches do count and everything could be sabotaged by one overweight pigeon breaking off the leading shoot!” 

As well as being home to the tallest conifer in Europe, Reelig Glen is also home to the tallest Larch in Britain (48m), the British champion Norway spruce (47m) and Britain’s tallest lime tree (46m)!

And if that isn’t enough, the firs in Reelig Glen, many of which were planted in the 1880s, now form a grove that is the largest concentration of trees exceeding 55 metres (180 feet) anywhere in the British Isles. 

The tallest conifer find was recorded last year during a survey and was published in The Tree Register, a registered charity that collates and updates a database of notable trees throughout Britain and Ireland.

The unique register has details of more than 150,000 trees, some of which are rare, unusual or historically significant and, providing full data on the largest trees of each species, is the definitive record of Britain and Ireland's champion trees.

For more information about the Tree Register visit  http://www.treeregister.org/aboutus.shtml

Notes to Editors
1. Forestry Commission Scotland is part of the Scottish Government's Environment & Forestry Directorate www.forestry.gov.uk/scotland.

2.  The tallest tree is Europe is currently a 72m Eucalyptus diversicolor in Portugal, a tree called “Karri Knight”.

3. The second tallest conifer is a Douglas in Germany at 65.8m.

4. For news, events and recreation information log on to
www.facebook.com/enjoyscotlandsforests For Twitter: www.twitter.com/fcscotlandnews

5. Tha FCS ag obair mar bhuidheann-stiùiridh coilltearachd Riaghaltas na h-Alba agus a' riaghladh nan 660,000 heactairean ann an Oighreachd na Coille Nàiseanta, a' dìonadh, a' cumail smachd air agus a' leudachadh nan coilltean gus buannachdan a thoirt dha coimhearsnachdan, an eaconamaidh agus, ag obair an aghaidh atharrachadh gnàth-shìde. www.forestry.gov.uk/scotland

e-mail: paul.munro@forestry.gsi.gov.uk