From:Cedar Park, TX Region: Southwest Topic: Trees Title: Bracket fungus on live oaks Answered by: Nan Hampton
I live in Cedar Park and the house we just bought has 4 native live oaks growing in the front yard. On two of the live oaks there are bracket fungi growing at their base. Each tree just produced two new brackets in the past two weeks. I was told that bracket fungus can eventually kill a tree and that they should be cut down eventually. My questions are: Is this that serious and can it spread to my other oaks and how quickly can it cause the trees to decline. Also how do live oaks get this pathogen and is there anything I can do to prevent it. Thank you for any assistance you can provide.
Indeed, some bracket fungi can be harmful to your trees. The bracket part on the outside is the fruiting body that will produce spores to form other fungi. Its presence indicates that the vegetative part of the fungus, called the mycelium, consisting of interconnected thread-like structures, is living inside the tree. The mycelium invades the tree where it absorbs part of the tree's nutrients and can also alter the internal architecture of the tree. The tree could eventually be killed by the spread of the mycelium inside it. Although healthy trees can usually resist the fungus, it can enter the tree through pruniing wounds or other injuries. You can read more about the parasitic bracket fungus in Wood Decay Fungi on Living Trees from the University of Massachusetts.
As Mr. Smarty Plants sees it, you need to identify the fungus on your tree and determine whether it is an agressive parasitic bracket fungus. You will also want to learn the best way to remove the fruiting body to keep spores from finding a place in other trees and to find out if there is a way to kill the mycelium growing inside the tree. In order to do this Mr. SP suggests you contact one (or all) of the following:
How close to a female tree will a male Possumhaw Holly need to be planted to ensure pollination in Plano, TX? April 01, 2010 - I would like to plant a female Possumhaw Holly in my yard. Does a male need to be planted nearby in order for the female to have berries? If so, how close must the male tree be located? view the full question and answer
Taproot tree to replace willows by pool June 23, 2008 - Installing Pool with bomanite decking all around it. We're in process of cutting down 18 year old Weeping Willow due to root invasiveness and small messy leaves. Can you recommend a good shade tree w... view the full question and answer
Tree transplants having problems in Manchaca TX April 03, 2010 - I have recently transplanted a Mexican Buckeye, Chinquapin oak, and Sandpaper tree that I have been raising inside since they were seedlings. They have now developed a browning of the tips of their l... view the full question and answer
A suggestion for a native small tree for San Diego September 23, 2010 - Another good suggestion for a native small tree for San Diego - Garrya veatchii - Southern Silktassle. It's really gorgeous!
view the full question and answer
Hardy Tree for Kansas March 14, 2012 - I'm hoping to find a tree that is hardy and will survive all rough seasons in Wichita, KS. The spot is in front of a northern exposure window. view the full question and answer