What’s Wrong With My Trees? Pine Wilt Disease

Pine Wilt Is A Devastating Disease Of Pines

Pine wilt disease, or pinewood nematode, is a devastating disease spread by sawyer beetles that affect Scots, Austrian, and other non-native pines. When the beetle feeds on the pines, the nematodes feed and multiply in the resin canals. When this happens, the resin leaks into the tree’s water transport system creating air pockets. As a result, the tree cannot move water and nutrients.

Signs And Symptoms Of Pine Wilt Disease

pinewood nematode
Penn State Department of Plant Pathology & Environmental Microbiology Archives , Penn State University, Bugwood.org

Early symptoms of pine wilt disease are subtle before the tree begins rapidly declining. Signs include:

  • Needle browning
  • Tree death from the top downward
  • Retention of dead needles

Confirmation of the disease is done through testing as well as observation.

Managing Pine Wilt Disease

Managing pine wilt disease successfully means keeping your trees healthy through good watering, pruning, and mulching and planting resistant varieties like Norway spruce,white spruce, and native conifers.

If a pine on your property has been diagnosed with pine wilt disease, you should remove it as soon as possible to prevent the spreading of the disease. Green waste should be destroyed and not used for mulch or compost. Contact the experts at Hansen’s Tree Service for safe tree removal services.

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