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Fungi ID on Atlas cedar trunk

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4 hours ago, Treeation said:

Thanks David........not a fungus I am familiar with, what would you suggest the signifance of that would be? Do you think its just a result of a mild and wet stint of weather and susbsuquent surface mould or is there soemthing going on at a deeper level?

Could be dead bark, could be dysfunctional xylem/phloem. Have you looked at or considered excavating around the trunk/root interface to assess the root vitality?

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13 minutes ago, David Humphries said:

Could be dead bark, could be dysfunctional xylem/phloem. Have you looked at or considered excavating around the trunk/root interface to assess the root vitality?

Hi David, At this stage it does seem like a good idea....would you recommend an air spade investigation?

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3 hours ago, AJStrees said:

might be worth getting the soil tested and seeing what has changed since the start of its decline. Potentially there is a micro environmental change in the area. No expert so you probably know more than I. Just a shame to see a tree getting into a state like that. With the greenery growing around the root area in your photos it does seem like there is a lot of water in the area. 

 

Potentially getting the root area checked to see what damage might have occurred where you cannot see it. I know the Cedars where I work are each on a bank with very well drained soil and they have been growing for 150 years or so and still going strong. Always quite dry around the root area as they do drink a lot, but don't like sitting in water. 

 

I am not trying to teach grandmother to suck eggs. 

 

Thanks for this, is certainly food for thought....sounds like further investigation around the root system should be the next step.

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2 hours ago, maybelateron said:

Regarding the negative results from the research lab:

When I was still working as a GP I learnt that often the lab would fail to grow a positive fungal culture when sent a sample of toe nail clippings, when the nails had a classical appearance of fungal infection. This is a common symptom from middle age onwards. We were advised that if it looked fungal then treat it as such even if lab result was negative.

Does anyone know if there is a similar difficulty sometimes for testing trees samples for fungi?

 

I have been observing a lovely large Atlantic Cedar over the last five years on a site we used to manage. It has been showing typical dieback compatible with Sirococcus, and keeps having a flush of new needles then dies back a bit again.

It overhangs a road in the housing estate (in grounds of former county asylum, lots of lovely big mature trees), and is next to a bus stop, so risk assessment of fell vs wait and see is a bit interesting.

 

The entire site is TPO'd and the local tree officer (who is great to work with, unlike the other councils I have to deal with) agreed it could be felled. The site management company asked us to take it down, then when two residents living opposite the tree kicked off big time management said leave it as it is.

 

I gave up the grounds and tree maintenance on that site two years back, due to frustration on many counts, and the tree is still standing and dithering about live vs die.

 

No doubt if it sheds a limb and there is injury or worse to anyone the residents who kicked off will be the first to point fingers, but not at themselves.

 

 

Thats interesting to hear about your experience with lab testing....Forestry Research didnt really give me any indication of the likelihood of being able to produce a fungal culture with the given samples. In hindsight it would have been a good question to ask them at the time!

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1 hour ago, Treeation said:

Hi David, At this stage it does seem like a good idea....would you recommend an air spade investigation?

Hand dig or airspade investigation. Either option will potentially give you more knowledge of the root/buttress condition.

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19 minutes ago, David Humphries said:

Hand dig or airspade investigation. Either option will potentially give you more knowledge of the root/buttress condition.

Thanks David, Sorry to be a pain and keep on asking questions but I know you have extensive experience with root investigtions. Its not something I have really done before. If I were to hand dig what exactly would you recommend? Digging around all main butresses to a depth of? and would you just be checking for decay using mallet and probe or would there be anything else I should be looking out for? Thanks in advance!

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1 hour ago, Treeation said:

Thanks for this, is certainly food for thought....sounds like further investigation around the root system should be the next step.

Hope it goes well with a good result. Might need to feed the tree once you know what the situation is. Give it a bit of a nutritional boost depending on the recommendations from the experts. 

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1 hour ago, Treeation said:

Thanks David, Sorry to be a pain and keep on asking questions but I know you have extensive experience with root investigtions. Its not something I have really done before. If I were to hand dig what exactly would you recommend? Digging around all main butresses to a depth of? and would you just be checking for decay using mallet and probe or would there be anything else I should be looking out for? Thanks in advance!

Hi Pat, to be honest there is no specification as each tree will be vastly different In terms of root morphology and growing environment. You’re pretty much on the money.

Excavate the soil by hand with small spade/trowel around all the main butresses (or where there is a specific fruiting) being careful not to damage root bark. Checking for decay and dysfunction using a sounding mallet and probe. Be aware of any live cables.

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On 06/01/2019 at 19:16, David Humphries said:

Hi Pat, to be honest there is no specification as each tree will be vastly different In terms of root morphology and growing environment. You’re pretty much on the money.

Excavate the soil by hand with small spade/trowel around all the main butresses (or where there is a specific fruiting) being careful not to damage root bark. Checking for decay and dysfunction using a sounding mallet and probe. Be aware of any live cables.

Thanks a David! Will keep u posted!

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On 06/01/2019 at 11:40, Treeation said:

Hi there, the tree does sit upon a bank with a small stream below so the soil probably remains fairly moist especially at this time of the year when the water table is high. I imagine the majority of the root plate is on higher and better drained ground. The tree apparently has always flourished until the last year or so. I also, took samples of foliage and sent off to Forest Research for lab testing with Sirococcus tsugae in mind but the surprisingly the results showed no positive sign of the pathogen although from my observations of the discloured foliage and possible small black fruiting bodies on the underside of the twigs and Atlas cedar being particulalry susceptible to the pathogen I was sure that it was Sirococcus tsugae.

Any luck with regards the Cedar? 

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