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A partnership project that arose from a Forestry and Land Scotland sponsored CivTech challenge has won the Sustainability Award in this year’s Scottish Public Service Awards.

TreeTape – a new system of germinating and planting young trees put forward for the CivTech Challenge - will help increase the number of viable seedlings grown from seed and has significant implications for forestry around the world.

The new system, which mechanically plants seedlings that have been germinated in special cells joined in a continuous ribbon of tape, can plant over 1 million trees in a day – when a team planting by hand would only have managed 60,000.

Josh Roberts, Innovation Manager with Forestry and Land Scotland, said;

"This really is a giant leap forward for foresters around the world who are all doing their bit to help the global effort to mitigate the Climate Emergency.

“In our recent trials of the system at our Newton nursery, near Elgin, what would have taken us weeks, with several teams on the go, was achieved in just four days.

“A lot of people have contributed to this project – not least our local staff at the Newton Nursery – the Scottish Government’s CivTech team, which has really been the lynchpin in this whole exercise, and of course the team at Treetape Ltd, whose brilliant idea is proving to be so successful.

“Speaking on behalf of everyone involved, we’re very proud that forestry – and a forestry innovation – has been recognised with this fantastic Public Service Award accolade.”

TreeTape will help ensure the continuity of tree supply that is required to meet the Scottish Government’s ambitious tree planting targets in response to the Climate Emergency.

A great leap forward in itself, Treetape, which has already drawn interest from around the world, has the potential to deliver even greater benefits when combined with other CivTech innovations including moisture retaining seed coatings and seed priming technologies.


Notes to editors

  1. Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) manages forests and land owned by Scottish Ministers in a way that supports and enables economically sustainable forestry; conserves and enhances the environment; delivers benefits for people and nature; and supports Scottish Ministers in their stewardship of Scotland's national forests and land.

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  3. Media enquiries to Paul Munro, Media Manager, Forestry and Land Scotland Media Office 07785 527590 or