A family has planted 400 trees in the Burren, Co Clare, as part of a restoration project of native pine, which once dominated the area and was thought to have gone extinct.
Bernard Dunford, the co-founder of landscape conservation charity The Burrenbeo Trust, enlisted the help of his three teenage children to help him to plant all of the trees in just three days.
"We're just sick of the pandemic, so it was fantastic to get us all out."— RTÉ News (@rtenews) January 22, 2021
This is one way to beat the lockdown blues. A family planted 400 trees in just three days as part of a project to restore Ireland’s native pine tree in the Burren in Co Clare ?????? pic.twitter.com/duqlaISV3f
100 of the trees are the native 'Pinus sylvestris' and the other 300 are companion species.
Pinus sylvestris was thought to have died out in Ireland over 1,500 years ago but recent investigations by scientists at Trinity College Dublin found that an isolated population of native pine trees survived at a remote site in the Burren.
These native trees appear to have maintained their continuity in the area over the last 2,000 years and are genetically distinct from the introduced 'Scots pine' trees.
"We were able to collect seeds from that pine and grow them in a nursey not far from here," Mr Dunford said.
"Three years later, we’ve got these beautiful saplings which are ready to plant."
"It’s a lovely ecological restoration project," he added.
Getting into the outdoors to plant the trees with his family was "fantastic" he said, as they are "all sick of doing everything online and Zoom meetings".
"Hopefully over the years we’ll be able to watch them grow, thrive and prosper in the Burren," he said.