The Prince of Wales has spoken of his love for planting trees and said he hopes climate change does not “destroy” his efforts to make the Duchy of Cornwall a greener place.
Charles’s green thumb is a dominating theme in a two-part documentary series which follows the prince around the estate to mark his 50th working year as the Duke of Cornwall.
The series, commissioned by ITV, offers a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the Duchy, which covers more than 130,000 acres across 23 counties.
The second episode, airing at 9pm on Thursday October 31, follows Charles as he potters around the estate, pruning, laying hedges, and meeting his tenants.
The prince explains how the Duchy is run to reflect his belief that economic development works best when in harmony with the natural world and local communities.
“It’s all part of man working in harmony with nature really, to produce these astonishing landscapes,” Charles said.
“Half the battle in this exercise is investing in the future, and I love planting trees and trying to improve and enhance the environment to restore lost habitats.”
In the last two decades, the prince, who has been vocal about the need for action on climate change, has increased Duchy woodland by more than half.
“I just pray that climate change and all the horrors we are facing now if we don’t do something about it, won’t completely destroy all this effort,” he said.
“To me it’s absolutely crucial that we don’t battle with nature and actually work with it, with her.”
Reflecting on his half a century as custodian of the vast countryside, coastline and city that make up the Duchy, Charles said it is “wonderful” to see younger generations taking on farming.
“For me the most important thing is to have enough, as it were, starter units for the younger generation, and I’ve been hugely impressed by the quality of them, and their enthusiasm, the interest, but also their approach to the farming systems they want to do,” he said.
“The wonderful thing … is to see this new generation wanting to do all these things.”