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Summer is the Season for Forest Health

BY JUSTIN MALLET

Periodic inspection of timber is needed to check for insect and disease damage. Summer months are the perfect time to look for any disease, infested, or dead vegetation because it can be easily seen in the green foliage. If you find something that may be an issue, give your forester or a member of the Arkansas Department of Agriculture – Forestry Division a call to see if it is something that needs to be addressed or positively identified. Office locations and contact information can be found at https://www.agriculture.arkansas.gov/arkansas-forestry-commission-contacts.

Recently, personnel in Polk County investigated a large area of dead foliage, which was spotted from an aerial detection flight survey for insect and disease infestations. Upon arriving to the site, numerous maples were identified as dead and/or dying. After investigating and consulting Chandler Barton, Division Forester with the Arkansas Department of Agriculture, the conclusion is it could be a case of bacterial leaf scorch. Samples were sent to the University of Arkansas Plant Health Clinic for confirmation.

Forest Health Calendar for this month and next (courtesy of Chandler Barton, Arkansas Department of Agriculture – Forestry Division):

September:

• Fall defoliators of hardwoods, like walking sticks, may be abundant

  Hypoxylon canker spreads between oaks (Aug.-winter); drought makes trees more vulnerable to hypoxylon, avoid wounding them

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