Live Oak Wilt - Knowledgebase Question

Austin, TX
Question by DorisHug
March 25, 1998
Please give me information re: Live Oak tree trimming/care guidelines to prevent the infestation of Oak Wilt (Chalara Quercina I believe is the fungus that causes the problem). We have 23 acres of trees we want to preserve.


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Answer from NGA
March 25, 1998

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My reference here says that oak wilt is caused by the fungus Ceratocystis fagacearum. It appears that root grafting is a major for of transmission--when oak roots touch, they can grow together, transmitting disease. If your stand of oaks is dense, this could present a problem. One recommendation for controlling oak wilt is to avoid pruning during the growing season. This is because the wounds attract insects that may be carrying the disease.

I strongly advise you to get advice from your state or county forester, or department of natural resources. You have quite a lot of land in oaks, and there may be newer control methods.

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