The Department of Agriculture has said there have now been 46 confirmed cases of ash dieback in the country.

Of the 46 cases of Chalara fraxinea, 26 are in forestry plantations in counties Carlow, Cavan, Clare, Galway, Kildare, Kilkenny, Leitrim, Longford, Meath, Tipperary and Waterford.

In horticultural nurseries, 14 have tested positive for the disease, as well as three samples from roadside landscaping, one garden centre, one private garden and one farm.

Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney has said he is aware the situation has presented difficulties for those who have had to remove and destroy ash plants.

However, he said he believes that "taking decisive action now on imported ash product is the correct approach to prevent the establishment of this disease in Ireland".