We have just returned to the Minervois for a couple of weeks and the local paper has front page news about the re-planting of trees along the Canal du Midi. At a cost of €30m for felling and replanting in this area, there have been protests at the speed of the felling and even a move to wait for a possible vaccination to save the trees.
The last time we visited, in November, work was under way felling the mature Plane trees near Homps. At the time of our first blog about the canal’s diseased trees, we’d heard that a mixture of species would be used to replace them. However this article reports that 6 new species will be tested for 10 years along different stretches of the canal, then the most adapted of the 6 will be planted in long distances for an homogeneous landscape.
The 6 species are:
- Quercus prinus, Chestnut Oak
- Populus alba, White Poplar
- Carya sp., Hickory
- Platanus, Hybrid Plane Tree (Disease-resistant variety)
- Celtics australis, European Hackberry
- Tilia tomentosa, Silver Lime
Trialing each species and then using only the most adapted one for replanting the length of the canal may ultimately recreate the renown formal look of the Canal du Midi but we can’t help wondering if this is risky?