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Hotel rooms have numbers. So do houses and apartments. And on military bases even the buildings have numbers on them.

But trees?

Yes, even the trees are numbered on military installations, which include the 1,204 trees on RAF Mildenhall alone.

That number is far from static. “We’re putting up new trees every day,” said Paul Grace, manager of Defence Estates.

The home of the 100th Air Refueling Wing is also home to a host of horse chestnut, ash, silver maple and birch trees.

The numbers come in handy when this wide array of trees needs some tender loving care. A team of specialists maintains the trees and fights a host of tree disorders and diseases such as heart rot, honey fungus, fire blight and bacterial cankers.

“We also monitor their growth and check on their general well-being,” Grace said.

Such devotion to tree health has a cost. The base spends roughly $30,000 every five years for a comprehensive tree survey and approximately $4,000 for general maintenance.

Occasionally tree maintenance specialists have to clip the top of trees depending on their proximity to the airfield, Grace said.

Tree height is a consideration with aircraft landing on RAF Mildenhall’s runway.

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