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Root disease is often easily recognized from afar. Changes in tree density and clusters of young trees or brush associated with tree mortality are good indicators.

When a storm comes through your forest, the damage is obvious. You’ll see broken limbs and tops and windthrown trees. Based on these physical, visible signs, you will know exactly where to target your clean up and harvest activities.

Alicia Christiansen is the Forestry Extension Agent for OSU Extension Service of Douglas County. Alicia can be reached by email at alicia.christiansen@oregonstate.edu or phone at 541-672-4461.

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(2) comments

stash1947

Very informative Alicia. Would the same treatment be useful for white and black oak stands? Is sudden oak death a result of subterranean fungi? Is there a place to have your soil tested to figure out what's going on? Thanks.

CitizenJoe

Stash1947, sudden oak death is caused by Phytophthora ramorum. Phytophthora are in a separate kingdom* from the kingdoms of animals, plants, fungi, and so on. As far as I know, the physical measures of isolation and maybe water management are the only measures that help prevent disease in individual stands. But the organism is spread in rain, air, hikers' (and firefighters'!) boots, and so on. Sucker is like ChickenMan--everywhere. And our own bay laurels are a primary host.

Maybe selection and genetic engineering will help in the future; just as there are resistance genes in potatoes that can resist Phytophthora infestans, some oaks might resist and reproduce.

Alicia and OSU are invaluable. Thank you, Alicia!

*the whole idea of kingdoms is an intellectual construct that is kinda outdated; they lost me at four, went to six, went to eight and back down to six, and now it's better to think of clades; clades better represent evolution and the tangled bank that is life.

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