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Diseased Elm Trees

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From: Doug Millar
Decatur, IL
I lost one Elm tree to a disease last year and now I have another fully mature Elm dying off as well. I do have other elms in our yard and wish to protect them from disease, so I am interested in any preventive measures I can take. Also it is truly a disease or something else? I did take some pictures of the dying tree and leaves and one of the trunk showing some small circular holes. Thanks for any advise you can provide.

Extension Message
From: Richard Hentschel
Extension Educator, Horticulture
DuPage/Kane/Kendall Unit
There are two main pests of Elm and they go hand in hand. There are Elm Bark Beetles that feed just under the bark and doing so, disrupt the flow of food and water within the tree and with enough damage, cause limbs to die and eventually the whole tree. The beetle carries with it a fungal disease called Dutch Elm disease. This pathogen is spread by the beetle. Once inside the tree, the disease grows and blocks the movement of water and food as well. While you can treat for the beetle, treating the disease is much more difficult. As the disease moves within the tree, branches will "flag" and die, moving from branch to branch until the tree is dead. DED can kill the tree in a single season. Consider getting an Arborist to assist in determining the exact cause and the cost of treatments vs removal and replacement.

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