Pretty Flower Fungus in Oak Tree

Pretty Flower Fungus in Oak Tree

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Found this on a nature walk in the town of Lincoln, MA, USA. Is this edible? I believe it is a type of fungus.

I believe it is a type of fungus.

Yes, this is a kind of fungus. Specifically, I believe it's of the genus Laetiporus sp., and is commonly known as "chicken of the woods" and "sulfur shelf". Notice that in both images the mushroom is growing on an oak tree.

Is this edible?

I strongly recommend that you watch this and this video. Collectively, they provide more than enough information on how to properly ID the fungus, how to harvest & cook, any potential look-alikes, and even possible medical applications.

IF my suggested identification of your posted organism is correct, then yes, it's edible.

Landscaping Beneath Oaks – What Will Grow Under Oak Trees

Oaks are tough, magnificent trees that are integral parts of many western ecosystems. However, they can be damaged easily if their very specific growth requirements are altered. This often happens when homeowners try landscaping beneath oaks. Can you plant under oak trees? Limited planting under an oak tree is possible as long as you keep the tree’s cultural requirements in mind. Read on for tips.

Vulnerable Oak Species

Old growth of willow oak and water oak in urban landscapes and park areas are particularly vulnerable to white rot, experiencing steady increases in root and butt rot attacks in the late 20th century, especially along the East Coast of the United States. These oaks normally live 65 to 80 years and even longer, especially in protected parks and urban green spaces. As they age, oaks become more susceptible to root and butt rot. Infestations can spread to white oak, scarlet and red oak, Shumard oak, post oak and black oak. These longer-lived species may be vulnerable to the spread of white rot fungus from their shorter-lived cousins.

Support for Forest Species

As helpful as oaks are to homeowners, they are also important for native woodland species. Numerous species rely on support from oak trees.

This support, at times, is quite literal. For example, oaks are often the tree of choice for nesting animals. Squirrels, birds, and other animals make homes in oak tree branches.

Along with this physical support, oaks are a reliable food source as well. These trees can produce copious amounts of acorns.

Mammals use these acorns as an immediate food source. They also store acorns underground to save them for seasons when other food supplies are scarce.

At times, these animals will forget where they buried their acorns. That will reduce their food supply.

But in the long run, that forgetfulness leads to more oak trees. When in the right conditions, those forgotten buried acorns will soon sprout and begin their long journey to becoming a mighty oak tree.

The Plant Doctor - Biscogniauxia (Hypoxylon) Dieback of Oaks

Biscogniauxia dieback (formerly called Hypoxylon canker or dieback) is a common cause of oak dieback in Mississippi. This disease, caused by either of two fungi, Biscogniauxia atropunctata or B. mediterranea, is found throughout the United States and is especially common in the South.

All oaks are susceptible to Biscogniauxia sp., especially trees in the red oak subgroup. The most frequently and severely affected include black, blackjack, laurel, live, post, southern red, Texas red, water, and white oaks. Although the disease is most common on oaks, other tree species such as maple, hickory, beech, sycamore, basswood, and hornbeam also can be infected.

Biscogniauxia dieback is a disease of stressed trees. The fungus enters the tree through wounds and natural openings in the bark. In healthy trees, the fungus survives in small colonies in the bark and sapwood and is kept in check by the tree’s natural defenses. Stresses such as drought, heat, wounds, root damage, toxic chemicals, and other diseases reduce the tree’s defenses and give the fungus an advantage. In stressed trees, the fungus is able to grow rapidly and release spores that start new colonies. The fungus is favored by warm (85–95ºF), dry conditions. In Mississippi, outbreaks of this disease often are seen a year or two following a significant drought.

The fungus disrupts the flow of water and nutrients through a tree by destroying the plant’s nutrient-conducting tissues (sapwood). Biscogniauxia sp. is a white rot fungus that decays sapwood by breaking down the cellulose and lignin in the wood. This gives the wood a white coloration and a spongy texture. Strands (hyphae) of the fungus stain the wood black as they grow, causing black lines in the sapwood, referred to as zone lines.

Symptoms of Biscogniauxia dieback mimic general water stress and include the following:

  • Smaller than normal leaves that make the crown of the tree look thin
  • Dead branches
  • Yellowing or wilting leaves
  • Brown sapwood

Because the symptoms are so generic, diagnosis of Biscogniauxia dieback relies on visible signs of the fungus. The fungus forms a cushion-like mat, called a stroma, between the wood and the bark of the tree. Pressure from this cushion causes the bark to peel off in patches or long strips, exposing the stroma. The tan-colored stroma is covered with spores, giving it a powdery look. Over time, the stroma turns silvery-gray and black pimple-like structures appear on its surface. An old stroma often is completely black in color. Stromata are the most obvious sign of this disease and make it easy to identify in the field.

No chemicals are registered for Biscogniauxia dieback of oaks. Management centers on preventing the disease and getting rid of infected trees quickly.

Management options include the following:

  • Avoid wounding trees.
  • Maintain good cultural practices such as fertilizing properly (based on a soil test), preventing or relieving compacted soil, and watering during hot, dry weather.
  • Pruning out dead or declining limbs may control the spread of the fungus on a tree, especially if combined with good cultural practices that increase the vigor of the tree and eliminate stresses. Infected wood should be destroyed immediately to keep the fungus from spreading.
  • Severely infected trees should be cut and burned. Ideally, the stumps should be destroyed, as well.

Information Sheet 1798 (POD-03-20)

By Clarissa Balbalian, Diagnostic Laboratory Manager, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology and Plant Pathology, and Alan Henn, PhD, Extension Professor, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology and Plant Pathology.

Copyright 2020 by Mississippi State University. All rights reserved. This publication may be copied and distributed without alteration for nonprofit educational purposes provided that credit is given to the Mississippi State University Extension Service.

Produced by Agricultural Communications.

Mississippi State University is an equal opportunity institution. Discrimination in university employment, programs, or activities based on race, color, ethnicity, sex, pregnancy, religion, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, status as a U.S. veteran, or any other status protected by applicable law is prohibited. Questions about equal opportunity programs or compliance should be directed to the Office of Compliance and Integrity, 56 Morgan Avenue, P.O. 6044, Mississippi State, MS 39762, (662) 325-5839.

Extension Service of Mississippi State University, cooperating with U.S. Department of Agriculture. Published in furtherance of Acts of Congress, May 8 and June 30, 1914. GARY B. JACKSON, Director

The Mississippi State University Extension Service is working to ensure all web content is accessible to all users. If you need assistance accessing any of our content, please email the webteam or call 662-325-2262.

What can I do about those sprouts under my oak tree?

There are almost never seedlings growing from acorns. If there were, you would be able to pull them up easily. What you see are sprouts from the roots of the existing tree therefore, you do not want to spray a herbicide on them in an attempt to eliminate the sprouts for you will hurt the “mother” tree along with the sprouts.

Only a small percentage of oaks send up suckers from the roots. It is a genetic trait, like freckles, except I like freckles. But like freckles and sunshine, some trees have the ability to sucker, but do not unless stimulated to do so. Oaks having a slight tendency to sprout suckers will often do so when roots hit a barrier, such as trees confined to a parking lot planter, or between a sidewalk and driveway. Also, when roots are disturbed and damaged by rototilling, they are more likely to sprout suckers. But some trees never will make suckers. When choosing an oak in a garden center, if there are sprouts coming up at the inside edges of the container, I would avoid that tree.

You may choose to mow them along with the grass, if grass still exists. Or if the grass has thinned too much, you might plant Asiatic Jasmine groundcover, and use hedge trimmers to trim the jasmine and oak sprouts to a uniform height. You can cover the area of sprouts with a heavy gauge woven geotextile, and then either mulch or spread large gravel or decomposed granite over the top of the geotextile. My favorite solution, when appropriate, is to cover the ground with geotextile and then build a wood deck.

Or if you prefer a thick green lawn, you may remove the oak tree, and all of the tree roots with a backhoe. If you just cut down the tree, grind down the stump and all the large roots you can see, there will still be thousands of oak sprouts emerging from the remaining roots in your new lawn or bed area for a few years afterwards. The area will need to be continually sprayed with an herbicide.


12 Comments on &ldquoOak Tree Caterpillars (October, 2017)&rdquo

Last year my Oak trees were infested for the first time since two years ago when I moved in my house. There were yellow cocoons everywhere! They attached everywhere under the eaves, on the brick, on garbage cans, on my pots, etc. I mean everywhere!! They look disgusting. How can I prevent that from occurring this year again.

Check for caterpillars and if they are present, spray with Spinosad. Thuricide will stop them from feeding, but if they are finished feeding and are migrating looking for a place to spin a cocoon the Spinosad will kill them.

If I spray, does it harm other caterpillars and insects or the birds in the trees?

Q: I have orange growths on limbs of my oak tree. Will it damage the rest of my oak?

A: Thanks for sending me photos of your oak tree it helped me identify the problem right away. The orange growths on the limb of your oak are shelf fungi. The portion you see outside the tree is called the fruiting body of the fungi. The presence of the fruiting body on the outside indicates the limb is rotting from the inside out. Inside the limb can be found millions of thin white fibers called mycelium. Fungal mycelia have the ability to break down the wood fiber into material they can digest. The fungi may live off the tree for months or even years before the fruiting body appears on the outside. The presence of the fruiting body is a clue which reveals the limb may break off at any time. If the limb is hanging over a car or house or any other important structure consider removing it before it falls off and potentially causes damage. Certainly, this would not be the best place to put a picnic table either! Fungal shelves found on the trunks of trees or palms indicate the whole tree may be weakening and in danger of failing. There is no chemical application to cure this fungal growth it is merely doing its job of breaking down dying matter. This is truly the full circle of life in action.

Diseases Affecting Live Oak Trees

Live oak trees are susceptible to a number of diseases like root and butt rot, mistletoe, wilt, etc. Knowing about these will help you identify and treat the symptoms in a timely manner, so that you do not lose the tree.

Live oak trees are susceptible to a number of diseases like root and butt rot, mistletoe, wilt, etc. Knowing about these will help you identify and treat the symptoms in a timely manner, so that you do not lose the tree.

There are about 600 species of oak found in the world. Two common genera of oak trees are Lithocarpus and Quercus. The leaves of these trees are characterized by lobed margins and spiral arrangements. Few species however, have smooth or serrated margins. Flowers of oaks are in the form of catkins and their production takes place in spring. A cup-like structure known as cupule bears the nut of oak. This nut fruit is known as acorn. The live oak tree is susceptible to a few diseases. Some of these diseases cannot be controlled at all, whereas others can be treated with proper preventive measures.

Oak Root and Butt Rot: The causal organisms of root rot in oak tree are fungi, parasitic algae, and water molds. Excess irrigation results into the growth of these organisms in the root zone of oak. Common pathogens responsible for the cause of root rot in oaks trees are Phytophthora spp and Armillaria mellea. These pathogens prefer a moist environment for their growth. One of the commonly observed symptoms of root and butt rot is that the tree may get blown down during winds. Dying limbs and sparse foliage are also observed.

Mistletoe: The parasite called mistletoe feeds on oak trees and furthers weakens them, if not controlled in a timely manner. Dissemination of the mistletoe takes place by means of birds. Removing the mistletoe parasite from these trees can be a temporary solution. However, for long term/permanent control of this problem, the damaged parts need to be removed completely.

Oak Wilt: The wilting of oak tree results from infection of fungus. The fungus attacks vascular system of the oak tree. Water and nutrient supply required for growth of this plant is blocked. Discoloration of the leaves of oak tree is the first observed symptom. The leaves start to turning yellow and wilt as the disease progresses. In about six months from the time of infection, the tree dies off. There is no way that oak wilt can be controlled. Burning branches and disposing off the wood is the only means to get rid of wilt.

Drippy Nut Disease: Acorn weevil and wasps are carriers of the organism which causes drippy nut disease in oak trees. Erwinia quercina, the bacteria is responsible for this disease. The above mentioned carrier insects puncture the acorns on the trees and transfer bacteria. Symptoms of the drippy nut disease are low acorn production and dying of branches. The disease is not curable. However, it should not be a cause of concern as the disease is not much of a threat to the plant.

Sudden Oak Death Disease: A full-grown and mature oak tree is more prone to this disease than the younger ones. A waterborne fungus called Phytophora ramorum is the causal organism of sudden oak death disease. Dissemination of this fungus takes place in the form of spores. Modes of dissemination include the irrigation water, gravel, contaminated soil, and wind-blown rain. Signs of this disease can be observed in the form of bleeding canker found on tree barks. Phosphate compound and fungicides are used as preventive measures. If the disease reaches its advanced stages, the damage becomes irreversible.

Disease Cycle Edit

  • Spores germinate and infect oak tree.
  • Infection spreads throughout the tree and leaf symptoms develop. Discoloration develops in the vacular tissue.
  • Tree dies.
  • Fungal pressure pads and spore-bearing mats form under bark.
  • Nitidulids feed in pads and emerge with spores in and on their bodies.
  • Nitidulids visit fresh wounds on healthy oak and deposit spores.

Bottom cycle. Root graft Spread (Expansion of infection center).

  • Fungal spore move through grafted roots into adjacent uninfected trees.
  • Healthy tree becomes infected.

The fungus overwinters on dead tissue from diseased trees. Symptoms first appear in spring and summer. Highly susceptible species typically die within one year (often within six weeks) after symptoms appear. Symptoms begin in the tops of trees and can be difficult to notice. The disease progresses inward and downward from the tree top. Leaves become chlorotic beginning at the leaf tip and leaf edges. An abrupt demarcation of chlorotic veins and green tissue is often a distinguishing characteristic in live oak infections. [26] The foliage may droop, curl lengthwise, wilt, and begin to fall. Leaves drop from the tree in the middle of summer, however less susceptible trees may retain leaves longer and resemble seasonal autumn foliage. Highly susceptible species will exhibit rapid crown dieback, while less susceptible species may only lose a few scattered branches. Live oaks may survive several years with progressive dieback, but often die within six months. Following defoliation, fungal fruiting bodies develop from mycelium under the bark of the tree. The mats grow to 10 – 20 cm in size, elliptical in shape, and grey in color with white margins that darken with age. These mats are not found on live oaks and rarely on white oaks. Trees capable of producing mats are called potential spore-producing trees (PSPT). Brown streaks in the sapwood is also observed in the oak wilt disease. However, this symptom is not always associated with the disease.

The oak wilt fungus can spread from diseased trees to healthy trees in several ways. The disease can spread long distances (overland) by airborne spores in open wounds caused by wind damage, pruning, or other mechanical damage. Alternatively, under ideal conditions (temperature, moisture content, wood pH) spore mats form under the bark of the dead tree. Spore mats develop in the spring or fall for 2 -3 weeks. The center of spore mats produce chains of barrel shaped spores, called endoconidia. Conidia are asexual spores dispersed by air, rain, and insects. [27] If compatible mating types are present, these mats will also produce sexual spores called ascospores in fruiting structures called perithecia. Ascospores are spread by water and insects. [27] These spore mats (or pressure pads) increase in size, eventually breaking through the bark and releasing a fruity odor that attracts wildlife, including sap beetles, bark beetles, other insects, birds and animals, such as squirrels. Insect vectors transmit the disease in spring to early summer in the Mid-West and late Winter in Texas. Insect transmission is the primary way new infection foci originate.

The fungus can spread short distances through naturally occurring root grafts. Root grafts form when two or more underground roots merge together from adjacent trees. Typically, roots from the same, or similar species, can form root grafts as their cambia are pressed together and combine. [28] [29] Fungal spores in the xylem travel to nearby trees through these root grafts and can rapidly kill many trees simultaneously. This transmission method accounts for the vast majority of infections and is particularly devastating as groups of trees are killed. The disease can extend 10 – 20m per year (40m per year in Texas) from the infection foci to surrounding trees. Diseased trees can continue to harbor and transmit the disease for several years through the root network.

The disease results from fungal spores clogging xylem vessels and preventing water and nutrient flow. Mycelia growth between and through vessels end up blocking xylem pits in the vessel endwalls. Tylose protrusion and the accumulation of 'gums' will further obstruct vessels. Tylose is a outgrowth of parenchyma cells created as a plant defense against pathogens, water deficiency, wounding, and heartwood formation. Tylose formation signals senescence of adjacent parenchyma cells and secretion of secondary metabolites (called gums), which may include phenolics. [30] The interruption of the xylem vessels precedes tylose formation. Tylose and secreted gums act as a barrier to slow the colonization of the pathogen and play an important part in plant defenses. However, the action to compartmentalize the oak wilt fungus ultimately obstructs all water conductance, leading to death. The fungus can survive in the xylem for multiple years, if the tree is not killed.

The specific measures taken depend on several circumstances but should include appropriate combinations of the following:

Watch the video: Τα ιδανικά φυτά για τον χειμώνα (August 2022).