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  • ...Training videos   To support the VETree training products, the following training videos were recorded, to be watched on your own or in a classroom. Each video is complemented by a short quiz to test your knowledge. The videos can be downloaded for offline use.   Techniques for crown reducing a veteran tree Halo clearance for veteran trees The importance of the land around veteran trees Common sense risk management of veteran trees Creation of decaying wood habitat Management of fruit trees Management of pollards still in a regular cycle of cutting   What to assess in trees before considering management options? (lecture by David Lonsdale) Aging processes in trees, with special reference to beech and oak (lecture by David Lonsdale) ...

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    Veteran fruit trees

    This is a short quiz about veteran fruit trees. Some of the answers might be found in the video above.

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  • ...What is a veteran tree?   If you asked 10 different people to define a veteran tree, you would probably get 10 different definitions, all of which contain at least a grain of truth. The definition of a veteran tree is not precise.  Many people tend to focus on the chronological age of a tree however a specific age limit cannot be defined, since this will differ very much between tree species: a 150 year old birch is ancient, while a 150 year old oak is still a youngster. Instead, it is better to look at features about the tree such as holes, hollows, decaying wood or an obvious generally gnarled shape.  Another clue might be the tree’s historical and cultural background. Kvilleken Closely related to the above ‘age definition’ is the ‘life stage definition’. Most people are very familiar with young and mature trees. But we often forget that the life of a tree does not suddenly stop when it has reached its maximum size. A tree slowly ages, loses some vigour, sheds a limb and ‘grows down’ (i.e. it may become shorter in height). In fact this post-mature or ancient stage may well be the longest phase of its life, although in reality it is difficult to determine precisely. Tree life cyle But a tree does not need to be very old to show veteran characteristics. As a result of its environment, natural damage or active management, it can start to show the features of old age when much younger. These trees are not ancient, but they certainly are veterans. This is the most commonly accepted definition nowadays: a veteran tree is a tree which has markedly ancient characteristics, irrespective of chronological age. The term ancient is applied specifically to trees that are ancient in years (Lonsdale, 2014). ‘Ancient characteristics’ may include decaying wood in the trunk, branches or roots, fungal fruiting bodies, hollows and a naturally retrenching crown which is gradually becoming smaller and smaller. These features are not a sign that the tree is about to die, in fact a veteran tree may stay alive and healthy for many decades and often centuries and even dying veteran trees may endure for many decades. veteran characteristics Trees may be of interest not because of their age but because of their historical significance.  They may reflect past land use, be connected with a person or an event or be part of a designed landscape. Be sure to appreciate and value these irreplaceable trees whenever you meet them.    


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  • ...Wood pasture Romania  Securing the Future for Veteran Trees across Europe   Preliminary programme   9.30 AM   Registration of participants - coffee/tea 10 AM     Conference start Welcome by the Governor of the County of Västra Götaland (to be confirmed) Presentation of the VETree project (Vikki Bengtsson, Pro Natura) European perspective on the importance of veteran trees (Ted Green, Ancient Tree Forum, UK) Cultural and historical value of veteran trees (Dr. Håkan Slotte, Swedish National Heritage Board) Biodiversity value of veteran trees (Claes Svedlindh, Director of Nature Conservation, County Administrative Board of Östergötland) 12 AM     Lunch 1 PM       Conference continued How are veteran trees protected in Sweden - Action plan, Natura 2000 habitats and Biotope protection legislation (Hasse Berglund, Environmental Protection Agency) (to be confirmed) Specialist management demands skilled tree workers - a European perspective (Tomislav Vitkovic, President (ret'd) of the European Arboricultural Council, Croatia) LONA "Värna Skyddsvärda Träd" project - veteran trees in urban environments (Linda Ternström, HUT and Jörgen Nilsson, Trollhättan kommun) How can we protect veteran trees across Europe? (EU representative) (to be confirmed) Summing up of the day: how do we take everything forward? (Urban Emanuelsson, Centre for Biodiversity) (to be confirmed) 3.45 PM  Field visit to Västra Tunhem - veteran oak trees and management issues 6 PM       Evening buffet and after dinner speaker (to be confirmed) - Scandic Swania Hotel, Trollhätan  ...

  • ...Training products   On this page, you can download all the training products that have been developed during the VETree project. Using VETree training material - PLEASE READ BEFORE USE   Download the training material for a 1-day basic workshop 'Valuing and managing veteran trees'   Get a sneak preview at the training material for the 3-day 'Train the trainers' workshop   Download the VETree videos (you will be redirected to our Vimeo-channel, where you can download the videos in the required quality) or watch the videos online.   Download the Handbook 'Ancient and other veteran trees: further guidance on management': Handbook_EN (pdf, 10.08M)   Download the VETree summary document 'Valuing and managing veteran trees': VETree_summary_document_EN (pdf, 9.11M)     The UK partner in the VETree project, the Ancient Tree Forum (ATF), is a Registered Charity No. 1071012.  The ATF relies on donations and grants to fund its activities and invested heavily in the VETree project because it believes strongly in the importance of spreading knowledge and experience about veteran tree management.  If you are intending to use the VETree training materials commercially we urge you to consider making a donation to the ATF (suggested amount £10 per course delegate).  By doing this you will increase the chances that we will be able to revise the material and/or undertake further projects to help improve the management of veteran trees in the UK.Please contact hannah.solloway@ancientreeforum.co.uk for more information on how to do this.We would also encourage you to use the calendar on the VETree website as this will help advertise your courses and it will help avoid clashes of dates. Contact:tom.joye@lne.vlaanderen.be...

  • ...e-learning   What is a veteran tree? Read it here!   Watch our videos and test your knowledge.   Test your overall knowledge on veteran trees straight away in the quiz below.  

    Summary quiz

    This is a quiz on all video topics, summarising the short quizzes after each video.

      Want to learn more? Check our suggested reading list: Selected Reading List (pdf, 186.79K)...

  • ...Wood pasture Romania  Securing the Future for Veteran Trees across Europe   International seminar organised by the VETree Project 15th October 2014 Kalasköket Fasetten, Kardanvägen 37, 46138 Trollhättan, Västra Götaland, Sweden   Veteran trees are a part of our cultural heritage and provide a home to a wide range of rare and threatened species.  Veteran trees have been valued and celebrated throughout history and are a fundamental part of many European cultural landscapes. They are however, under threat across the whole of Europe. Despite the very high biodiversity value of veteran trees, supporting several EU protected species, only a few Annex I Natura 2000 habitats include veteran trees as a crucial element. This makes resources for their management difficult to secure. We have a joint responsibility to raise awareness of their value, secure their protection and manage them appropriately for the future.   This seminar brings together a wide range of stakeholders, from policy makers and site managers to arborists, cultural historians and ecologists. It will provide an opportunity to share experiences and find solutions for securing the future of veteran trees at a local and European level.   The VETree project has produced a range of freely available training material in six different languages to help raise awareness and improve management of our veteran trees.   Booking is now closed Seminar Programme (pdf, 433.26K) Download the seminar presentations here   Attendance to the seminar will be free and free transport to and from Göteborg will be provided.   There will be an optional evening meal (for an additional charge), with after dinner speaker on the evening of the 15th October. With the support of the LONA Värna Skyddsvärda Träd Projekt   Logo LONA...

  • ...Train the trainers workshops   Based on the training material for the basic workshop 'Valuing and managing veteran trees', a more advanced '3-day Train the trainers' workshop has been developed during spring 2014.  Pilot 'Train the trainers' workshops will be held in Sweden, Spain and the UK. The first 'Train the trainers' workshop (9th-11th April 2014) took place in Bertiz in Spain, the second workshop (19th-21st May 2014) took place in Vårdnas in Sweden. The feedback from the attendants will now be processed in preparation of the third workshop in the UK (2nd-4th September 2014). Some pictures from the workshops in Bertiz and Vårdnas ... Train the trainers workshop Spain Train the trainers workshop Sweden   During the last year, we have also been filming tree work on veteran trees in the UK and Sweden to produce videos for the workshops. The first versions of the video's are being reviewed as we speak. Filming in Hampstead Heath filming...

  • ...VETree   Welcome to the VETree project website.VETree is an acronym for 'Vocational Education and Training on Veteran Trees', a European project set up by 5 partner organisations that started in november 2012 and ended in october 2014.The aim of the project was to set up a European wide quality training programme in veteran tree management. The training programme included both basic and advanced training material, online training tools and mentoring, video, ...If you would like more information, please contact the project coordinator Inverde or one of the partner organisations.   home ...

  • ...The VETree project   Background to the Project Veteran trees, at the end of their natural life cycle and full of holes and dead wood, have a very high ecological and historical value and demand specific management. The ecological value of veteran trees is reflected in the inherent role they play in several Natura 2000 habitats and ‘housing’ Natura 2000 protected species. Since veteran trees are by definition only replaceable over centuries, it is crucial to properly manage existing veteran trees and prolong their lives, at least until a new generation of trees can fill the existing generation gap.Ongoing economic, agricultural and forestry development during the last centuries have led to a drastic change in land use. In rural areas, millions of veteran pollard trees have been abandoned after centuries of active management for wood and fodder. Trees are no longer pollarded, get overgrown by secondary woodland or are removed in favour of agricultural efficiency. This process is still ongoing (often with EU agricultural funding) in certain countries or regions in Europe (for this consortium for example in regions of Spain and Romania). In more urban areas, veteran trees are often damaged or removed under the pretext of safety. These processes have led to a dramatic loss of veteran tree ecosystems throughout Europe and the accompanying loss in management skills and knowledge.Veteran tree managers face new challenges: abandoned pollards are features without historic precedent (they were always managed in a more or less regular cycle) and the strict focus on safety issues creates a need to prune veteran trees instead of just letting them lose branches naturally. During the last years Ancient Tree Forum has done a lot of work gathering knowledge and experimenting with veteran tree management: new management techniques were developed and tested. This project aims to 'short circuit' the learning process in other countries, without repeating mistakes and losing rare veteran trees. Tree managers, landowners, ecologists, … all have expressed their need for training in veteran tree management during ATF’s visits in the UK and in other European countries. All other partners also detected similar needs during arboricultural training or consultancy. These scattered needs led to small initiatives throughout Europe, but there is a clear need to bring together 'state of the art' innovative management techniques, to develop free and 'ready to use' training materials and to organise training throughout Europe. General objective of the project The general objective of this project is to spread the knowledge about veteran tree management as widely as possible. Innovative management techniques need to find their way to all the stakeholders in veteran tree management who expressed a need for knowledge and skills: land owners, farmers, foresters, ecologists, advisors, arborists and tree managers (private and public). An indirect and secondary goal is to raise awareness about conflicting policy (e.g. agricultural policy vs. veteran tree conservation), by making policy makers (both local and EU) aware of the value of veteran trees and the threats they are facing.Our direct target group for reaching these goals are trainers (arboricultural, ecological, agricultural, ...). By training 15-20 trainers in veteran tree management in all 5 partner countries and by providing them with 'ready-to-use' course material (presentations, videos, case studies, handbooks, …), they will be able to independently organise 1 day training courses in veteran tree management at a basic level. This 1 day training course can then either be incorporated in existing vocational education and training (e.g. in arboricultural VET) or can be organised as a 'stand-alone' course (e.g. for farmers or land owners). This working method will enable us to create a multiplicator effect and reach a significantly broader audience. It will also ensure the afterlife of the project's results. To guarantee that the training course meets the needs of the target group, the content will be tested by organising pilot training courses in the 'importing' partner countries (Belgium and Romania). Concrete aims of the Project The trainers will be trained to a more advanced level in veteran tree management during a 3 day workshop, that will include an educational component. Being on a more advanced level, this workshop might also answer the needs of certain stakeholders in 'exporting' countries (UK, Sweden, Spain) who already have reached a basic level in veteran tree management. The trainers will be provided with specialist technical material (handbook, case studies, …) and 'ready-to-use' course material in their native languages. They will be supported through a website with basic e-learning  tools, video material and a mentoring system where specialists can be contacted (both during and after the project). This website will sow the seeds of a European Veteran Tree Network (at least informal and in the 5 participating countries), exchanging knowledge on veteran tree management. Project progress During the course of the project all the training products were tested in pilot workshops. The pilot basic workshops have been held at the end of 2013, the more advanced 'Train the trainers' workshops took place during spring and summer 2014. Basic workshop Train the trainers workshops ...

  • ...Basic workshop   Based on our initial survey of existing knowledge and training material on veteran tree management throughout Europe, we have developed training materials for a basic workshop on 'Valuing and managing veteran trees', setting a European standard of good practice. These training materials were tested during pilot workshops in Belgium and Romania in September and October 2013.   Screenshot basic workshop   Attendants to both workshops were very enthusiastic and gave us exhaustive feedback on the setup and the content of the workshop. After the 'Train the trainers' workshops (summer 2014), the revised training material for the basic workshop will be freely available on this page. Some pictures of the pilot workshops in Belgium and Romania.   Pilot Workshop belgium Pilot Workshop Romania...

  • ...Press   Soon you will find our press releases here.   If you want more information to publish on the VETree project or veteran trees in general, please contact the project coordinator or one of the partners....

  • ...Ancient Tree Forum   The ATF started as a loose group of colleagues who enjoyed standing underneath ancient trees and discussing them!  It was officially founded in 1998 and is a company registered in the UK as well as a charity.  We hold two field meetings and have a two day ‘forum’ each year which are attended by people from a wide range of backgrounds including arborists, biologists, historians, advisers and members of public.  We have produced a range of leaflets and in 2013 published our first book on the management of ancient trees.  The ATF works closely with many Governmental and NGO partner organisations working towards its aim of no avoidable loss of ancient trees in the UK.  The business plan was completed in 2011 followed by the business plan in 2012 and funding is actively being sought to expand the organisation.  There are local affiliated groups in various regions of the UK and we have one member of staff who is working on the VETree project.     ATF Role in the VETree project The ATF is responsible for the implementation of work package 5 train the trainer workshops, one each in the UK, Spain and Sweden. The bulk of the knowledge, skills and innovative techniques in veteran tree management has been developed by the ATF in the UK. The ATF co-ordinate the delivery, promotion and reporting regarding the workshops. ATF is also involved in the other work packages such as supplying specialist guidance materials and monitoring the development of skills in the pilot workshops to ensure successful outcomes. The ATF promote the project in the UK and will exploit the project materials after the end of the project term.Website: www.ancienttreeforum.co.uk Contact persons: Helen Read:training@ancienttreeforum.co.uk Address:Ancient Tree Forumc/o Woodland TrustKempton WayGranthamNG31 6LLUnited Kingdom...

  • ...Pro Natura   Pro Natura was created as a cooperative research and consultancy company at the end of the 1980’s. Pro Natura works primarily with issues related to nature conservation and has a wide level of competence within the majority of fields within terrestrial ecology. All staff have an ecological background, each with a specialist area including one of Sweden’s experts in the management of ancient trees. We also have personnel experienced in translation, design and layout. Our organisation works regularly with vocational training delivery in the areas of ancient trees, species identification and habitat management in Sweden and in other countries in Europe. We also carry out surveys, monitoring, environmental impact assessments and produce management plans. The majority of our work is carried out in Sweden, but we have also worked in the Baltic States, Russia and the UK. PN   Role in the VETree project In the VETree project, Pro Natura is the project applicant and is responsible to the Swedish National Agency for the implementation and budget for the project. Pro Natura works closely with Inverde who are the project coordinator. Pro Natura is the coordinator of work packages 2 and 3: the collection and compilation of course material.  Pro Natura will also be involved in all the other work packages, contributing with their veteran tree management and training expertise and will ensure that the transfer of innovation is fit for purpose. Pro Natura will be responsible for the sustainability and exploitation of the project’s results in Sweden. Pro Natura will ensure this via collaboration with the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency.Website: www.pro-natura.net Contact personsVikki Bengtsson: vikki.bengtsson@pro-natura.net Ola Bengtsson: ola.bengtsson@pro-natura.net Address:Pro NaturaTräringen 6641679 GöteborgSweden...

  • ...Amigos de los Árboles Viejos / Zuhaitz Zaharren Lagunak   Amigos de los árboles viejos (Ancient Trees Friends) is a non governmental organization concerned with Nature conservation.  Its main goal is the conservation of ancient trees and their biological diversity associated.  It has implantation in Navarre and other areas of north of Spain since 2005. It consists of a team of professionals with extensive experience in conservation of biological groups associated with old trees: saproxylic insects, birds, bats, arboreal mammals, bryophytes, fungi and lichens, as well as management of forests and trees with a high ecological value. Their work since then has been directed to produce specific technical material about the importance of conservation of ancient trees and to disseminate it.   AAV   Role in the VETree project Amigos de los árboles viejos is responsible for the implementation of work package 6 - Disemination. AAV co-ordinate the communication through press, social media and divulgative and scientific papers.AAV is also involved in the other work packages such as supplying specialist guidance materials and monitoring the development of skills in the pilot workshops to ensure successful outcomes. AAV promote the project in Spain and after the end of the project AAV will do its best to ensure a proper app for results and materials.Website: www.arbolesviejos.org/ Contact persons: Susana Cárcamo: susana@arbolesviejos.orgAna Narvaiza: ana.narvaiza@hotmail.com Mikel Belasko: mbelasko@gmail.com Address: Amigos de los árboles viejos / Zuhaitz zaharren lagunakZumedia 831174 Etxauri (Navarra)Spain...

  • ...Using VETree Training material – things you should know   The VETree training foundation course material is freely available for you to use in its entirety, without modification. It has been developed between 2012 and 2014 and has been thoroughly tested in five different countries (UK, Sweden, Romania, Spain and Belgium).  A panel of experts checked all the material including David Lonsdale, the editor of ‘Ancient and other veteran trees: further guidance on management’ who has extensive experience of tree physiology, decay and biomechanics. We therefore encourage you not to modify the material in any way. In addition, many of the photographs and illustrations have been given or purchased on the basis that they are only used in VETree branded course material. This means that if you modify the course in any way, you may not have the rights to use the photographs or illustrations. This may result in a prosecution if you do choose to use the material out of the original context. If you do feel a strong need to modify the material or have any other question regarding the training material, then please contact the VETree partner in your country, in the first instance, to check the specific conditions.   All the material can be downloaded and used freely under the following licence, unless stated otherwise: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License....

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    Root facts

    In this quiz you will be asked to confirm or deny root facts. Some of the answers might be found in the video above.

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  • ...Training material 'Train the trainers'   During the VETree project, several 3-day workshops were organised in different countries to train people to deliver the 1-day basic course, either within or outside their own organisation. Apart from veteran tree management topics, these workshops also contain an educational aspect. The VETree project partners will continue to organise these 'Train the trainers' workshops.   Train the trainers workshop Sweden    This training material is not freely downloadable, but you can have a look at the presentation, which is based on the training material for the basic workshop. This presentation is complemented with exercises, field visits, group work, etc. If you're interested in organising a 'Train the trainers' workshop or in attending one, please contact one of the project partners.   Train_the_trainers_handout (pdf, 5.15M)    ...

  • ...Progresul Silvic   “Progress Forest” Society is a non-profit juridical personality that was acquired in 2002 and working in forestry, environmental protection and biodiversity conservation.We have a total of 57 members, most of them forest engineers, and teachers or specialist in the field of natural sciences, social, and technical institute who completed their university degree.In the forest sector, P. S. members participated in professional exchanges with other counties with the forest engineers of the Forestry Association of Thuringia with whom we have a partnership resulted in several meetings both in Romania and in Thuringia. We were also partners in the organization of the "Forest management in Europe Conference” in 2006.Our specialists are involved in each year during the action "Month of planting trees", in the planting of seedlings actions performed by students from schools and high schools from Sibiu, the actions of sanitation of the forest and walking trails.In 2010, S. P. S has signed contracts with the Ministry of Environment and Forests administration for two Natura 2000 sites: ROSCI10227 Sighisoara-Tarnava Mare ROSPA0099 Hartibaciu, both with an area of 250,000 ha. To manage these sites we had to constitute an entire structure starting with the 15 rangers and ending with a specialist in forestry, biology, GIS, etc.   PS Role in the VETree project 'Progresul Silvic' is responsible for the implementation of work package 3 - organising two pilot training workshops, one in Romania and one in Belgium. These workshops will be important in testing out and perfecting the training package for a one-day course in ancient tree management. 'Progresul Silvic' is also involved in some of the other work packages, providing the perspective of the Romanian beneficiary of innovation, and making sure the transferred materials respond effectively to needs on the ground.After the end of the project, our organisation will be responsible for ensuring the sustainability and exploitation of the project's results in Romania.Website: http://progresulsilvic.ro/ Contact personsMarius Ureche: mariusureche@yahoo.com Address:PROGRESUL SILVIC str. Calea Dumbravii nr. 140550399 Sibiu, Romania...

  • ...Links   Organisations www.ecotransilvania.ro/ (RO) www.rosdrevo.ru (RU) www.natuurenbos.be (Agentschap voor Natuur en Bos, NL) www.inbo.be (Instituut voor Natuur en Bosonderzoek, NL, EN) www.wereldboom.org (NL) www.dendrologie.be (Belgische Dendrologische Vereniging, NL, FR) www.kvdv.info (Koninklijke Vlaamse Dendrologische Vereniging, NL) www.dendrologie.nl (Nederlandse Dendrologische Vereniging, NL) www.baas-isa.be (Belgian Arborist Associations, NL, FR) www.onroerenderfgoed.be (Agentschap Onroerend Erfgoed, NL) www.arbres.org (Arbres Remarquables: Bilan, Recherche, Études et Sauvegarde, FR) www.felixrodriguezdelafuente.com/ArbolesSingulares.aspx (Fundación Félix Rodríguez de la Fuente, ES) amicsarbres.blogspot.com (Amics Arbres – Arbres Amics, CATALAN) www.aearboricultura.org (Asociación Española de Arboricultura, ES) http://www.sombra-verde.blogspot.be (Blog, PRT) http://gigantesdafloresta.blogspot.com (Blog, PRT)   Veteran tree databases www.ancient-tree-hunt.org.uk (EN) www.monumentaltrees.com (EN, FR, NL, DE, ES) http://bomen-inventaris.irisnet.be (Inventaris van het Natuurlijk Erfgoed in Brussel, NL, FR) www.amorteira.org (Árboles singulares del Bierzo, ES) Árboles viejos y Árboles singulars de Pamplona (ES) Monumentos Naturales de Navarra (ES) Árboles singulares de Aragón (ES) Inventario de árboles y arboledas singulares de Andalucía (ES) Árboles singulares del País Vasco (ES, EUSK) Árboles monumentales de Valencia (ES, CATALAN) Árboles monumentales y sigulares de Cataluña (CATALAN, ES, EN, FR) Árboles singulares de Castilla y León (ES)   Forests/Parks/Nature reserves www.rezervatia-breite.ro/ (Breite Natural Reserve, RO, EN, DE)      ...