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A review of oak wilt management: A summary of treatment options and their efficacy

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Abstract

Oak wilt, caused by the invasive fungal pathogen Ceratocystis fagacearum (Bretz) Hunt, is a serious and fatal disease of oaks, Quercus spp., with red oaks (section Lobatae) generally being more susceptible than white oaks (section Quercus). Oak wilt was first recognized in North America in 1944 and has since been confirmed in 24 eastern, midwestern, and southern states. The purpose of this paper is to review relevant literature on the efficacy of oak wilt treatment options. Root disruption, sanitation, and chemical control methods have been used most often to manage the disease. Root disruption has primarily focused on severing root grafts between oaks. Sanitation has focused on removal and proper disposal of potential spore-producing trees. Chemical control has focused on the use of systemic triazole fungicides. Efficacy of treatments can vary significantly, for example from 54% to 100% for root graft barriers. Educational programs can increase prevention efforts, detection, compliance with recommended management methods, and overall efficacy. Our review confirms that management programs should address underground and overland spread and include an educational component.

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Koch, K. A., Quiram, G. L., & Venette, R. C. (2010). A review of oak wilt management: A summary of treatment options and their efficacy. Urban Forestry and Urban Greening. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ufug.2009.11.004

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