Are trees in your area dying?

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species8472
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Are trees in your area dying?

Curious to know how bad it is in other areas. I am sure others are worse than here but things will never be the same around here.

 

There are numerous species of trees here in PA that are dying off from either insects or diseases. It is just amazing when you go for a drive and see dead trees everywhere. It is very sad. Ash trees are very common and are being totally wiped out. There are not as many beech trees but they are being devastated too. Certain types of spruce and pines are dying just as fast. Butternuts are gone. It is scary dangerous to be in the woods when it is windy.

 

Now the spotted lanternfly is rapidly moving through the state. Two thirds of the counties have quarantines on most outdoor stuff, including vehicles, being moved out of the counties without being inspected. . We are not in the quarantined area yet so I don't totally understand it.

 

The lanternfly will infest most species of deciduous trees. Most mature healthy trees are supposed to survive except grapevines and apples are in special danger. We have over 100 wild apple trees that are old, shaded and not in the best health so I am worried about them. My father's family has been in the logging/lumber business for at least 4 generations which makes this situation tough to watch.

 

Arbor Day was Friday here. I have been an Arbor Day member for 39 years.

agent80
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Nothing new. Happening all over the world. Way too much tree logging going on. Every nation is building heat islands.

Bruno Burski
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The eastern US has a well managed forest. The trees are not dying because there is “way too much logging.” The emerald ash borer is killing the ash trees.

pinkpanda3310
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Aside from the foresting due to expansion we get “die back”. We go on bush trail/ walks in the hills of Perth and some areas have “booting cleaning stations” to try and prevent the spread.

I haven’t been mountain biking much the last couple of years but it’s also recommended to cleanse bikes (sometimes even during a race) for the same reason.

  

Verodin
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Problems here in Sweden with spruce bark beetles killing of spruce trees. Was never an issue, but the warmer climate has made it possible for them to migrate here and spread. More and more reports of affected areas that need to be cleared to prevent it getting even worse.

Pip
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All my silver maples are dieing. Took 5 down and have 1 to go this summer. Several more that can wait until next year. All my ash trees have been dead and gone for years. I have lots of invasive buckthorn and honeysuckle in the understory that I’ve been cutting out, it will drown out the good trees if you don’t keep it under control. The pine trees can die whenever they want. I don’t particularly care for them. Just a lot of work to clean up and lousy firewood. I’ve replanted a lot of area from seed, lots of little saplings that are a couple years old.

species8472
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Forgot to mention hemlock, the state tree of PA. It has an insect called woolly adelgid infesting them. Some reports say that the hemlock could go extinct. It is the most commonly used wood for building sheds and barns around here.

neo71665
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Southern pine beetle trying to take over here. Pine is a cash crop around me.

raccoon city
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In my area, some trees are dying out, but I don't think it's not a huge problem.

Most trees around here are fine, so it could be much worse.  :THUMBS-UP:

NoneTheWiser
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Yes, here in New Mexico, the pinon are being killed by bark beetles.
My uneducated theory is that the drought is stressing the trees, allowing the beetles to take hold and kill the trees.
Before too long we won’t have any pinon left, very depressing.

Verodin
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Forgot to mention, the main problem here is that it’s not forest. A forest has many different species, but here it’s by far monoculture (e.g. not natural forest). Only a few types of trees, purely for production (construction wood). So once an insect starts attacking and killing those species, large swatches are pretty much doomed.

pennzy
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I took down a bunch of ash trees this winter because they could hit the house when they do finally fall and they are dropping like flies all over my woods. No flashlight walks on windy nights Sad The hemlocks and blue spruce are also dying. Two extremely wet years back to back took out my bamboo and the roadies are not looking well either. Both were doing great for many years.

zoulas
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A professional once told me the north east trees are being hit hard with Dutch elm disease .

pennzy
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Very few Dutch Elms survived the disease. They are engineering a disease resistant Elm.

iamlucky13
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Western Washington and Oregon haven’t had any large scale problems that I’m aware of. There are quite a few fungal pathogens that sometimes will take out trees that are stressed for other reasons, including growing in soil not well suited for a given species, but is generally limited.

Similar for insects. There are some borers and bark beetles, but limited as far as I know on the western side of the state. My understanding is they are a bigger concern on the eastern side of the state, extending up into British Columbia, as well.

bobvoeh
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Down here we had a big problem with Citrus Canker and Yellowing Disease in our Coconut Palms. The spread seems to have slowed down. I’ve been lucky that none of my Citrus or Palm trees have fallen ill. Could be the fact that I don’t use any kind of lawn or tree service, doing the work myself which prevents any sort of cross contamination.

Correllux
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It’s been very sad to watch the decline of our forests over the last 30+ years. I don’t know if you’re old enough to remember all the chestnuts, but when I was a teenager they were already in drastic decline and I guess now they’re awfully rare and don’t seem to make it to maturity. Lots of interesting research where they have been creating a blight resistant chestnut, blending American and English chestnut genes and I guess the plots of hybrid trees are doing well so far. Ash has been going for a long time, and black cherry. This, even with the great reduction in their use for lumber compared to decades ago. I moved west and we have a lot of healthy elm trees here, mostly red/slippery but some American as well…most of them seem to not be plagued by disease other than the usual insect and fungal things. It was really alarming to me to read about the decline of beech trees last year – they are such neat and valuable trees, it’s a shame to think of a forest without them. I guess tulip isn’t so numerous anymore, either.

On some mountain trips to northern New Mexico and Colorado, it’s been crazy to watch the decline and death of all the conifers over the years and how that has also changed the floral life of the understory. I’ve been able to compare photos in some locations from the 80s, 90s, and 2010s and the difference is stark. On a couple of trips where I camped below treeline, I had to remember my hardwood-forest wisdom when selecting tent spots…almost got clobbered one morning by a 30’ standing doug fir trunk that came cracking down in the wind. Something I never thought about much in the conifers or up near treeline before, but surely need to keep in mind now. All that standing deadwood waiting to topple and providing fuel for fires, as dry as it has continued to be up there, generally. It’s sad.

Pine beetles have sure done a number on the southern jack/yellow/shortleaf pine forests, too.

Correllux
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I wasn’t aware of the hemlocks, either. It’s wonderful to stroll through areas thick with hemlocks…what a great fragrance. I hope they don’t go away.

Lightbringer
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A decade or so ago a row of trees in my local park had to get cut down because of some buggage doing naughty things, but other than that I haven’t noticed anything.

Other than hyu-mons cutting down trees along streets, Just Because. When I was a kid, my street was tree-lined, and now, just a few behemoths that’d destroy whatever house(s) they’d smash into should they go down in a high wind.

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bushmaster
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iamlucky13 wrote:
Western Washington and Oregon haven’t had any large scale problems that I’m aware of. There are quite a few fungal pathogens that sometimes will take out trees that are stressed for other reasons, including growing in soil not well suited for a given species, but is generally limited.

Similar for insects. There are some borers and bark beetles, but limited as far as I know on the western side of the state. My understanding is they are a bigger concern on the eastern side of the state, extending up into British Columbia, as well.


You are correct, the bark beetle is a big problem in eastern WA. Large swaths of dead and dying trees are evident across the countryside. Forest Service is trying to address it with accelerated logging in the infested areas but there are conflicts. It’s hard to make logging dead wood economically attractive . The mills won’t saw dead wood. They’ll grudgingly take it for pulpwood but don’t like it. Truckers don’t like to haul it because they can’t get up to weight. Loggers typically get paid by the ton so they take a cut in profits. I don’t have the answers and I’m sure it’s only going to get worse.

Keep your nose in the wind and your eyes along the skyline.
Del Gue

MtnDon
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Trees dying in the western US is a result of climate warming and drought, which sort of go hand in hand. The situation is quite dire. Here in NM we have had some severe wildfires that decimate the forest in large areas. All that is left at times is grey ash and blackened trunks waiting to fully dry out, rot at the base and topple on their own or by wind.

Right now, near us, the Cerro Pelado fire is running into an area that was devasted in 2017. Many of the blackened dead trees from the 2017 fires have fallen since and are now contributing to the spread of the present fire. It used to be that wildfires burned more slowly and could spend months meandering here and there. That was before commercial interests pushed for all wildfires to be extinguished to preserve the timber value. Couple that with all the various reasons that most logging was halted a few decades ago and we have ended up with too many trees crowded together. This was a problem the droughts have exacerbated.

[soapbox off]

bushmaster
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Great points, MtnDon. I agree completely.

Keep your nose in the wind and your eyes along the skyline.
Del Gue

turkeydance
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as Bruno B posted above….

last month, an arborist told us ALL of our Ash Trees are infected.
they are not dead yet, but will be in 2 or 3 years.
right now, they are small enough that i can
remove them by myself (and Stihl).

Pip
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I have a few ash trees that have survived, but I would guess 95 percent died. I have about 2 left and the neighbor has 4.

wle
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don;t think so = atlanta area, city in a [thinning out] forest [[developers mostly doing the thinning]]

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species8472
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pennzy wrote:
  No flashlight walks on windy nights Sad 

 

That is one thing I miss too. It used to be an every night event.

 

As you found out the dead ash trees make a terrible mess when they shatter as they hit the ground. They do make nice firewood though.

pennzy
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species8472 wrote:

pennzy wrote:
  No flashlight walks on windy nights Sad 

 

That is one thing I miss too. It used to be an every night event.

 

As you found out the dead ash trees make a terrible mess when they shatter as they hit the ground. They do make nice firewood though.


They shatter like glass. Luckily the lawn was frozen when I took mine down. There was a covering of hard snow/ice so I could use the tractor’s bucket to push the tops into piles along the wood line. Cool I will mulch the small stuff when I mow this summer. Some were over 2 feet in diameter and over 100 feet tall. Campfire wood for life.
MtnDon
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Here we are 10-11 days later and the Cerro Pelado fire is still burning. Now it has covered 42,000+ acres (17000 hectares) and does not want to stop. My adopted hometown of Los Alamos has moved to the “Set” stage of “Ready-Set-Go evacuation preparedness as it is sorta in the way… depending on winds and so on..

Three and a half miles (5.5 km) to the Lab property, 6-1/2 miles (<6 km) to home.

RichH
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pennzy wrote:
Very few Dutch Elms survived the disease. They are engineering a disease resistant Elm.

In the U.K. Dutch Elm Disease hit hard and killed most of our big, mature Elm trees in the 70’s- 80’s. There is no Dutch Elm tree as such, the disease was identified by Dutch scientist in 1914 and affects various Ulmus species. The vast change to the English landscape was caused by a fungus carried by bark beetles imported on Canadian logs, and hit again very aggressively when I was growing up.

There are pockets of mature Elms to this day, protected by the sea to the south of here and the high Downland. The beetles can’t fly in. Here’s a link to some of the history.

https://www.forestresearch.gov.uk/tools-and-resources/fthr/pest-and-dise...

Regarding engineered Elms, they already exist, we have been planting them locally in hedgerows, 16 more early this year along a local road. They’re not genetically engineered as in changing the DNA and using it to grow a species, but from growing and exposing many thousands and picking the ones that survive, taking cuttings or root shoots and Groots. Smile

Main tree disease here at the moment is Ash Dieback. It’s thriving in the ‘nature hates a monoculture’ forests and pretty much all trees, especially roadside, are being clear felled. I’m not sure the felling of all of them is necessary and suspect the government grants being handed out are driving it financially for landowners and contractors. The disease came from Asia and has been around so long the Asian trees have built natural immunity. The ‘advice’ for what it’s worth is to leave any tree that appears strong and healthy amongst others, but like I say, there are government grants to exploit for cash, and not a valid interest in letting the trees cope with the disease. Felling them all is pretty much the same fate but with a quicker return in the double bubble of cash for free and the selling of firewood (which is becoming a premium heating fuel due to vast increases in energy costs).

More on this here.

https://www.forestresearch.gov.uk/tools-and-resources/fthr/pest-and-dise...

We really do need to learn how to live with nature better rather than just sell it.

South Saxon

Correllux
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Fingers crossed, Don! Dismayed yesterday to see that the Hermit’s Peak fire is still raging and they’re having to prepare to protect Mora. I hope it doesn’t ravage up through Jicarita Peak and the Pecos Wilderness. Sad

Next time I drive through there it’s probably going to make me cry.

Is it spreading westward at all to the Jemez area?

MtnDon
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Correllux wrote:

Is it spreading westward at all to the Jemez area?

The prevailing weather patterns usually mean the areas to the western side of fire are safer than the areas to the E, NE, and SE. But that does not come with a guarantee. This Cerro Pelado fire moved north and east very quickly, but did also back to the west a little. The winds were wicked strong and gusting high for days.

Every Super Scooper aircraft in the US is presently here picking up water from Cochiti Lake. They are quite a sight to see in pickup mode.

There is an even larger fire about 50 miles to the east that is now the second-largest NM wildfire in history.

If anyone is interested and has Google Earth on their PC or mobile there is a fire map overlay of the Cerro Pelado fire available on this page.

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