Diseased or stressed trees can be dangerous. A diseased or stressed tree could be weakened structurally to the point where it fails, potentially damaging your property, other peoples property or even, in a worst case scenario, threatening life.
But how do you tell if your tree is sick and can you treat it yourself or does it require the services of a skilled tree surgeon?
At Hawes Arborists, we treat trees throughout Wiltshire, Dorset, and Somerset. So if you think your trees are infected with any of the diseases described below or look to be stressed then please give us a call on 01747 850253 or e-mail us at [email protected].
There are a wide variety of diseases and each species of tree has its own specific diseases it can succumb to. Fortunately, not all known tree diseases affect British trees but there are diseases to watch out for:
Britain has two native species of oak tree and Acute Oak Decline, a disease caused by bacteria, affects both.
With a great many oak trees in Wiltshire, if you have any on your property then you should check their health from time to time to make sure the tress have not been infected with Acute Oak Decline.
An oak tree can die to this disease within 5 years of the symptoms appearing. You may be able to tell how far along the disease it by a noticeable thinning of the canopy in the later stages.
Check your tree for dark liquid coming from small splits in the bark. You may also notice an increase of insects around the tree as they take advantage of its sickness.
Acute Oak Decline is thought to be caused by bacteria but the exact causes are not yet known, so there is no recommended treatment for infected trees.
This disease is known to be particularly concentrated in the Midlands and the South East but there are many oaks in Wiltshire, Dorset and Somerset which could become infected, so if you see what you think may be symptoms of this disease, please call Hawes Arborists as soon as possible.
We will be happy to check your trees and offer FREE advice and guidance on how to handle the problem.
Ash Dieback is a serious threat to ash trees in Wiltshire and in the region beyond which can lead to the death of the tree.
Visible symptoms include leaf loss and thinning of the crown. In Spring and early Summer, you may notice the leaves are more wilted than you would expect. The stalks of the leaves may turn brown or black as the leaves die and lesions may appear on stems and branches.
The disease is a recent import to the UK and is not limited to ash trees in Wiltshire so it does pose a huge threat to the ash population of the entire United Kingdom. Official Government estimates show that up to 99% of all our ash trees could succumb to the disease.
There is no effective treatment for Ash Dieback disease but you can help to slow the spread of the disease by removing infected branches and collecting up and burning (where permitted), burying or composting them.
Sweet Chestnut Trees
Sweet Chestnut Blight is caused by a fungus which enters the tree through wounds and then grown underneath the bark. As the infection spreads, it produces byproducts which lower the pH of the tree to levels which become toxic to plants. If left untreated, the infection will spread around the width of the tree and kill everything above it.
For signs of the infection, look out for an orange substance between cracks in the bark or individual branches which have wilted, often not dropping their leaves even after the other leaves have fallen.
At Hawes Arborists, we recommend taking down any trees infected with Chestnut Blight and burning them on the premises if possible. If it is not possible to burn them on the premises, then we can dispose of them for you.
Horse Chestnut Trees
Horse Chestnut trees are having a tough time at the moment with a range of disorders that are seriously affecting their health and long term survival, such as Bleeding Canker.
If your horse chestnut tree is infected with Bleeding Canker, the bark begins to start cracking and you will see a dark bacterial substance ooze out of that crack. Treatment is in its infancy but there is hope with research being done that may offer a treatment. Trees effected with Bacterial canker can die very quickly.
Leaf minor is a leaf boring insect that leaves the tree looking as if it has turned autumnal very early. Clearing away fallen leaves quickly and burning them is a very effective way of halting this pest.
With so many pine trees in Wiltshire, it makes sense that any occurrence of the infectious Dothistroma Needle Blight (DNB) needs to be identified and treated quickly by a qualified tree surgeon.
A pine tree infected with DNB will experience defoliation and then death. If you notice the needles of your pine tree developing yellow spots which turn red in time, then your tree may be infected. The symptoms are usually most visible in June / July which is also when the disease is at its most infectious.
Dutch Elm Disease is one of the most widely known tree diseases. A tree infected with Dutch Elm Disease will experience defoliation and eventually death.
Watch out for clusters of leaves which wilt or turn yellow before turning brown and falling from the tree. An affected tree will likely have healthy foliage mixed with yellow and brown leaves and shoots which have died back from the tip and curled into a shape resembling a shepherd’s crook.
If there is a twig you suspect may be infected, you can check it by cutting a cross section which should reveal a ring of dark brown staining in the outer wood. The staining is not always present in every affected branch so it’s still worth contacting Hawes Arborists to get a confirmed diagnosis.
Contact Hawes Arborists
If you are in Wiltshire, Somerset, or Dorset and are concerned that your trees are exhibiting any of the above symptoms or indeed any other signs of disorder then please get in touch with us at Hawes Arborists on 01747 850253 or [email protected] for expert, friendly and FREE advice and guidance.