TDA: Laurel Wilt Disease Detected On Rob. County Sassafras Trees

TDA: Laurel Wilt Disease Detected on Robertson County Sassafras Trees

TDA: Laurel Wilt Illness Detected On Rob. County Sassafras Timber

Tennessee Division of Agriculture urges forest landowners to test bushes

ROBERTSON COUNTY TENNESSEE: (Smokey Barn Information) –  The Tennessee Division of Agriculture (TDA) is advising Robertson County landowners to watch their Sassafras bushes after detecting new instances of laurel wilt illness in Robertson and Hamblen Counties. Earlier this yr, the illness was detected in bushes in Montgomery, Cheatham, Dickson and Williamson Counties.

“These new detections of this invasive illness present a big geographic bounce throughout the state,” State Forester David Arnold stated. “That is one more unlucky instance of an invasive pest impacting our forests. Landowners ought to take warning to forestall the unfold of this illness if detected on their property.”

Laurel wilt is a fungal illness attributable to an invasive pathogen, Raffaelea lauricola, which might have an effect on a variety of crops, together with sassafras and spicebush in Tennessee. The illness is transmitted by the wood-boring redbay ambrosia beetle and prevents the motion of water throughout the tree. Choked of water, bushes wilt and die inside just a few weeks or months. At present, no remedy has been developed that may treatment laurel wilt illness or defend bushes from an infection.


Sassafras is present in all areas of the state. The wooden is commonly used for small woodworking initiatives, inside end, cooperage, and fence posts. The tree is the host plant for the spicebush swallowtail butterfly and is ecologically necessary.

The easiest way to forestall the unfold of laurel wilt is to keep away from motion of firewood or different untreated timber. Laurel wilt is most definitely in Tennessee attributable to human motion of contaminated wooden. For extra data on sourcing disease-free, handled firewood, click on right here

If contaminated, bushes must be minimize down and chipped to forestall additional unfold. Chips from the contaminated tree must be destroyed by burning on website or coated with a tarp to forestall unfold of the beetles. Stumps must be floor right down to the soil degree and no particles of the tree must be transported from the positioning.

Tennesseans are urged to watch their sassafras bushes for browning of leaves, leaf loss, and marking within the interior bark. Should you suspect your bushes may need laurel wilt illness, contact Forest Well being Program Specialist Sam Gildiner at 615-837-5439 or [email protected] TDA Division of Forestry workers will help in figuring out the illness and recommending administration actions, if applicable.

The TDA Division of Forestry works to attenuate well being threats to Tennessee’s forest sources, together with mismanagement, bugs, and illness. To study extra about how Tennessee manages forest well being, click on right here.

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