LONDON:- Scientists say there is hope that some ash forests will be able to survive a devastating tree disease. Surveys around Europe reveal mortality rates from ash dieback as high as 70% in woodlands and 85% in plantations. A previous study found almost all ash trees could be wiped out. The disease has swept across Europe over the past 20 years, causing widespread damage to woodlands. In many cases the fungus will eventually kill infected plants. “Although the numbers seem grim, the percentage of trees that are still alive is encouraging from a long-term perspective,” said Prof Richard Buggs, of Royal Botanic Gardens Kew and Queen Mary University of London.