Willow troubles

Jumper(zone 6/ B.C.)September 9, 2005

I have a few willows in trouble. To begin with I have a few young ones an inch to an inch and a half diameter with a soft woody growth at the bottom. It is bulbous and when I poke it and gently turn my shears the wood gives way readily, releasing moisture. It is right at the root flare, on the top of those roots, almost into the soil. It reminds of the damage a wood borer would do to a pine but no maggot, less goo, more wood. I have some slightly older willows that I think might have canker. A series of black spots on the trunk that slowly expand and seem to kill in peices? Anything to do? Finally I have corckscrew willows dying back from the tips into the branches with nothing on the trunks with the same black colour. Help.

P.S I got lost and might have posted this in another site, sorry if you are reading this twice.

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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

The one with the growth at roots sounds like it might be crown gall (caused by a bacteria that causes galls to form). If that's what it is, it's a pretty serious problem that will likely result in the death of the tree. There isn't any treatment that I'm aware of. I've read of a biological control that works as a preventative, but I believe it doesn't help infected trees (I have no idea if it's available in Canada). The usual recommendation is to remove any infected plant and do not replant for at least two years.

I know that there are several sorts of cankers that can affect willows, but many of them can be controled by pruning and proper watering and fertilizing. Cankers usually only occur on stressed or injured trees - if you do have a crown gall problem it could be the cause of the stress.

BP

    Bookmark   September 10, 2005 at 1:42AM
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macc_mom

I have just been informed by my neighbor (a certified arborist), that my weeping willow is dying from an infection - but it was a quick conversation and I can't remember the scientific name he said. I also don't see him much b/c he travels. It presents just as jumper describes his tree and the rec was to remove the tree and all infected parts, then decide whether I wanted to leave the space empty or treat with a chemical that requires a license to even get.

Here's my question:

As the willow is centered 10-15 feet from other well-established screens and ornamentals, and I don't want to cause them damage - Can I just get rid of the illness and wait a few years or do I have to put down the chemicals to be sure that my other babies don't get sick, too?

Thanks for your input!

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 11:10AM
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