The potentially devastating news that chestnut blight has been found in north eastern Victoria puts all chestnut growers on edge. In USA it wiped out the entire industry in 3 years!
Chestnut blight is a fungus that enters through wounds in the bark. Which is a real worry for us as our trees are regularly smashed by the neighbour’s unmanaged Stringybark's.It grows underneath it causing a canker which will girdles and kills the branch above the infection point. The disease can kill the tree if the trunk is girdled by a large canker or several cankers growing together.
The first signs of infection is often seen as wilting, yellowing and death of leaves and shoots.Yellow –brown to orange cankers on young smooth barked trees or branches may also be early signs of infection.
The fungus is spread by animals (especially humans in this global village) that come into contact with the cankers and through the air after rain. If you suspect anything or need more information contact www.planthealthaustralia.com.au
Chestnut blight occurs in Japan, China, Korea, USA, Canada, Italy and throughout Europe. It infects chestnuts, oak, red maple, shagbark hickory and eucalyptus.
|Biosecurity team checking our orchard for chestnut blight. |