TE4: Supply and plant tree

Find out about eligibility and requirements for the supply and plant tree item.

How much will be paid

£1.28 per tree.

Payment for creating new woodland

Successful applicants will get paid up to £6,800 per hectare (ha) if they are using this item to create new woodland.

Payments for restocking after a tree health issue

Successful applicants will be paid if they’re restocking woodland where trees have been infected by Chalara fraxinea or Phytophthora ramorum. They’ll be paid up to the following amounts:

Restock tree species Ancient woodland site Other
Native £3,500 per ha £2,750 per ha
Non-native £1,750 per ha £2,250 per ha

Support is only available if trees are infected by Chalara fraxinea or Phytophthora ramorum.

The Forestry Commission or the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) must confirm cases of Chalara fraxinea.

Phytophthora ramorum infected larch and sweet chestnut has to be confirmed by a statutory plant health notice (SPHN).

Where to use this item

Available for Higher Tier


  • bare land (any land that has not been woodland for at least 10 years before the date of application)
  • woodland (following felling due to a plant health disease)
  • hedgerows

This item can be used to plant single trees, clumps of trees, hedgerows or woodlands.

Where this item cannot be used

  • if tree planting could damage areas of ecological, archaeological or historic interest
  • to plant woodland for producing Christmas trees or biomass
  • for restocking woodlands following a conditional felling licence (except where this has been issued for tree health reasons)
  • to plant ash trees

How this item benefits the environment

It will help create a range of environmental and social benefits that:

  • supports wildlife, particularly when new woodland links habitats or creates a protective buffer
  • reduces the risk of floods, improves water quality and prevents soil erosion
  • is resilient and can adapt to climate change
  • enhances the landscape


Prepare a woodland creation plan

When creating new woodland agreement holders must prepare a woodland creation plan (included in the application) that states the:

  • planting objectives
  • species to be used
  • planting density (the number of trees per hectare)
  • percentage of open space and means of protection (fencing or individual tree guards as appropriate)
  • areas to be planted and any areas of open space within the woodland (provide a map showing this information)

Creating or restocking woodland

Follow the requirements set out in the following table if trees are being planted to create new woodland or restock woodland:

Dimensions Create new woodland Create new woodland to improve water quality or reduce flood risk Restock after a tree health issue
Minimum agreement size 3ha 1ha 0.25ha
Minimum block size 0.5ha 0.1ha 0.1ha
Minimum width 20m 10m 20m
Minimum stocking density 400 stems per ha (sph) 1,600sph 400sph
Maximum internal open space 20% 20% 20%
Maximum individual glade area (after canopy closure) 0.5ha 0.5ha 0.5ha
Maximum linear open space width (after canopy closure) 20m 20m  

Agreement holders are likely to need to:

  • supply, plant and weed young trees
  • use tree species appropriate for the soil and climatic conditions that support the planting objectives
  • select planting stock that complies with the Forest Reproductive Material Regulations 2002 (where applicable) and is appropriate in size and stock type to site and prevailing conditions
  • create a suitable planting position by spraying herbicide in advance, scarifying in lines or preparing a bare patch of land (screefing) with a spade
  • use a planting method that helps survival, with roots fully inserted in the ground with the root collar at ground level - the tree must be firmed in without damaging the stem
  • protect young trees by attaching a 0.6m spiral secured with a cane (first check and agree this with an adviser, not required for conifer planting)
  • plant trees when dormant and attach the spiral guard immediately
  • maintain spirals until the trees are big enough to no longer need protection
  • stop livestock and other grazing animals from damaging the trees - use protective fencing or individual guards as needed (if using tree shelters, these will replace spiral guards)
  • remove the spiral and cane when no longer needed and dispose of or recycle them in line with waste disposal regulations
  • replace all dead plants in the following planting season (each grant funded tree must be alive and in good condition by the end of an agreement)

Keep trees weed-free

Trees must be protected from competing weeds for 3 years, or until they are big enough not to be threatened by competition from weeds.

This can be done by using suitable mulch, an appropriate herbicide or weeding by hand. Follow relevant laws and codes of practice if spraying.

Keeping records

Agreement holders will need to keep the following records and supply them on request:

  • any consents or permissions connected with the work
  • receipted invoices, or bank statements where a receipted invoice is unavailable
  • please see the record keeping and inspection requirements as set out in the Higher Tier manual for more detail

Agreement holders will need to keep the following records and supply them with the claim:

  • photographs of the completed work

Applicants will have to send the following with their application:

  • Forestry Commission Management Plan approval letter if required

A woodland creation plan is not required for:

  • planting following a tree health issue
  • planting of single trees
  • planting in hedgerows

The detailed requirements for this item will be tailored to the Higher Tier site. Higher Tier applicants should discuss and agree these requirements with their adviser.

This item can be used on the same area as the following items:

Speak to a Forestry Commission adviser about locating other options on a site.

Advice and suggestions for how to carry out this item

The following section gives advice on carrying out this item successfully but does not form part of the requirements for this item.

Selecting tree species

Select a tree species for the site that suits the management objectives, local soil, and current and predicted climate conditions. Use the FC tree species selection tool to find the right species and estimate yield class.

Further information

See the Higher Tier manual to find out more about the scheme and how to apply.

Published 2 April 2015
Last updated 10 March 2017 + show all updates
  1. Updated for 2017 applications.
  2. Information updated for applications in 2016.
  3. First published.