OSU works to educate public on sudden oak death

oak tree

Sudden oak death (SOD), caused by a non-native pathogen Phytophthora ramorum, has killed hundreds of thousands of tanoak trees in Curry County, Oregon, since it was first detected in 2001. With the expansion of the state quarantine in 2015, more landowners in Curry County are now under regulations to slow the spread of sudden oak death, which effects 130 other species and has spread to Doug-firs and grand firs. While important work has been accomplished to eradicate the disease, affected landowners lacked a resource guide covering disease prevention and restoration practices.

That gap was filled by publication and distribution of the Extension’s new publication Sudden Oak Death Prevention Recognition and Restoration, a guide for homeowners, small woodland owners, resource managers and conservation groups.

Many agencies and non-profits play a role by distributing the guide. Extension started neighborhood workshops to introduce it. The first event was held in Pistol River, a small community in Curry County. More than 40 people attended and learned how they can help stop the spread of sudden oak death. The curriculum combined presentations and hands-on exercises to help participants recognize the disease and understand management and planting options.

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