Advice on short rotation forestry for the British Isles

Advice on locations and climate

Information and advice > Advice on locations and climate

The main factor determining the species that are suitable for SRF at any location in the British Isles is the lowest temperature experienced in winter.

As a general guide, locations that experience temperatures below -16°C several times per decade are unlikely to be suitable for productive SRF with eucalypts, though small trials in such locations may still be worthwhile. SRF is generally a more attractive proposition in lowland areas away from central England and central Scotland. Gauging the suitability of a location for a particular species may seem daunting, but there is a lot of information available to allow informed choices:

  • There is much information on climate averages and extremes available on the web. The Spanish website tutiempo.net has particularly comprehensive historical data from 571 meteorological stations in Britain and 17 in Ireland, though it helps to know a little Spanish:
    http://www.tutiempo.net/clima/El_Reino_Unido/GB.html
    http://www.tutiempo.net/clima/Irlanda/IE.html
  • The survival or otherwise of particular eucalyptus species and other plant species from the southern hemisphere in local gardens is often a good guide to the species that are sufficiently hardy to thrive in a particular area.
  • Account also needs to be taken of the effect of local topographic features on frosts.  Valley bottoms tend to be particularly frost-prone.

There is further information on the cold hardiness of Eucalyptus and Nothofagus generally, and on the cold tolerance of individual species.