By Robin McKie Observer science editor

Walkers and other members of the public will be asked to help create new generation of healthy plants

A £1.2m project to recruit thousands of walkers and other members of the public to help save Britain’s ash trees is to be launched on Monday.

The aim of the AshTag project is to use “citizen science” to pinpoint trees that are resistant to ash dieback disease. Cuttings from these resilient trees could then be used to create a new, healthy generation of ash trees that could replace those ravaged by chalara dieback, which reached the UK in 2012 and is devastating many woods. In Denmark, the disease has killed 90% of the ash trees. Scientists hope to minimise the damage by building up details of resistant trees.