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I was out surveying this week and came across this mature ash. It's the first time that I've seen advanced symptoms on primary and secondary branches on a mature tree.

 

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Thats pretty mild syptoms compared with alot of trees in North Wales, seem your are a year behind in the progression  of it compared to here.

 

 

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4 hours ago, The avantgardener said:

This is what we are coming across in East Sussex although it is pretty extensive all over the South East.

 

Is all that is wrong with the tree caused by chalara ? Including the internal rot

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6 hours ago, Peasgood said:

Is all that is wrong with the tree caused by chalara ? Including the internal rot

The total dieback of the crown is caused by Chalara, the weakened tree has then succumbed to another pathogen which has caused butt decay and/or death of the Cambium layer.

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5 hours ago, The avantgardener said:

The total dieback of the crown is caused by Chalara, the weakened tree has then succumbed to another pathogen which has caused butt decay and/or death of the Cambium layer.

But there does seem to be, or it's being suggested that there is, some link between Chalara and colonisation by other pathogens. Whether Chalara in basal shoots opens the door to other fungi or what is still being debated atm. There's lots of reports of trees with only slight foliage colonisation that are really unsound due to unexpected basal delay. 

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It’s all a bit chicken and egg, isn’t it? Whose to say which is the primary / secondary pathogen.  To me it seems plausible that the basal decay was there first - held in check by compartmentalisation, supported by a healthy crown, and then Chalara infects the vascular system - weakening / killing off the crown - allowing the basal decay unhindered access to the rest of the stem.  

It’s highly likely to be a complex web of factors. 

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I would estimate that at least fifty percent of the 500 plus Ash trees that we thinned in this compartment showed some form of internal decay at the base, even if the crown was showing only slight die back symptoms. Most of the trees had the buttresses left on as a hold when felling, the the hinge wood was weak or decayed. The tree survey completed the previous Autumn had highlighted large amounts of honey fungus present in the stand.

We will be removing a similar amount in another stand this year.

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