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Laurel Wilt

Posted by happy_girl Z9 st. cloud (My Page) on
Wed, Oct 26, 11 at 15:44

This deadly fungus has invaded the neighborhood. My back door neighbor had to take down an avocado tree this past weekend. We first noticed the decline about 6 weeks ago & at first couldn't figure out the cause. I am a Master Gardener & at our Sept. meeting, our Horticulture Agent did a program on this terminal disease. The trunk was covered with tiny white tubes, about 1" long, of sawdust & excrement showing where the bark beetle entered.
A state Ag. agent came here, to St. Cloud, from Winter Haven, to check it out. The preferred method of disposal is burning but that is not allowed here in the city. The tree was cut up and taken to the solid waste dump to be covered with soil. There is concern that this fungus could destroy S. Florida's $30 million-a-year crop. Keep watch for this pest.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Laurel Wilt

I heard about that this spring when I took the Master Gardener's class. I didn't realize it had spread this far north and I didn't know what it looked like. I hope putting it in the dump was the right thing to do.

RE: Laurel Wilt

The State Agent told the neighbors to make sure it went to the solid waste dump & NOT to the dump where lawn & tree waste is shredded for mulch.

RE: Laurel Wilt

I heard about it several years ago and it actually started up in the Carolinas, I believe. There are many species in the Laurel family. I have a Red Bay that is a host plant for the Spicebush Swallowtails. There is a group in Georgia I believe that was asking for people to send the berries from the Red Bay tree to them so that they could start growing new trees to replinish the areas that were so devastated. I don't recall how they were going to prevent the beetle from infesting new trees but I did send berries for a couple years. At that time, it had started showing up in North Florida but not Central. Guess it has made it here now.

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