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Author Topic: Grubs killing my trees?  (Read 8443 times)

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Offline Missy

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Grubs killing my trees?
« on: April 23, 2008, 02:27:14 am »
we have live oaks here in the hill country in texas. i have a few small ones in a section of the property. Last year we had one of them die suddenly (or it seemed to me). yesterday we used a bobcat to knock the rest of it down and found huge grub worms through the entire thing. also a root to another tree has some bore holes in it and is dead at the surface but not completely just the piece of root exposed to sunlight. another one of the small oaks has some bore holes in it also. but the tree has some leaves. another one close to it also has a base hole (but not looking like bore holes). is it possible that these grubs are killing my trees or did they infest it once it died? how do i treat the others around this area. anyone know how far they will spread out? i have some very large oaks in the same area i do not want to lose to these things. . should i take down the small trees right next to the dead one or can i kill the grubs before its too late. HELP ME PLEASE. i have searched all over the internet calling everyone who deals with trees and pests and no one is helping me. all i hear is they like st augustine grass (which i dont have any of that). Thank You, Missy




This is the tree next to the dead grub infested one.







Offline LeeB

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2008, 04:01:49 am »
Missy, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it sounds to me like oak wilt got your trees and the grubs moved in after. Sudden death is a symtom of oak wilt. The tree will fine and then suddenly the leaves will yellow, fall of and the tree can be dead in as little as two weeks. The leaves will yellow around te veines first spreadind out to the rest of the leaf. Do a search for this disease on the web. A&M has some good info and also the Travis County Forestry Dept. I never found anything that will stop it or its spread. It hits live oaks really hard and also red oaks. You can spend tons of money trying to get rid of it, but all I have ever seen was it slowing it down a little and loss of the trees anyway. I really hope this isn't your problem.
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Offline beenthere

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2008, 09:26:12 am »
The grubs move into decayed/wet wood...don't kill the tree.

The small picture of the standing oak appears to have decay from previous injury...maybe fire or being damaged near the ground line. Decay is likely.

LeeB seems to have hit on the reason the trees are suddenly dying too.

south central Wisconsin
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Offline WDH

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2008, 11:34:04 pm »
I agree with Lee about the grubs.  They are not likely the culprit.  They are probably secondary opportunists.
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Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2008, 07:20:55 am »
They appear to be round headed borers and there are many species of them. They are beetles. They generally have long antenna, at least the length of their body (sawyer beetle) or longer (ponderosa pine bark boring beetle). Some attack live wood, such as maple borer and red oak borer, but rarely kill the tree. Sugar maple is the only known host of maple borer. There are several oak boring species. But it seems that other insects species such as carpenter ants gain entry in the borer holes to cause further damage but only when the trees are in decline, dying or dead. However decay fungus can enter wood borer holes to cause rot.

The best control is make firewood from damaged trees, it seems to be very effective in there control according to the USFS. You'll see sap around fresh wounds and possibly an egg mass near by. There will be tiny frass (bug poop) around the wounds or tree base and slivers of wood where the larva emerge from wintering. Wood peckers are also your friend. Oval exit holes are from emerging beetles that grew to adult stage. The adult doesn't go into the wood, just the larvae.

Pre-commercial thinning pays off. :)

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Offline LeeB

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2008, 11:14:53 am »
There ain't very many woodpeckers in the Cental Texas area SD.
'98 LT40HDD/Lombardini, Case 580L, Cat D4C, Ford 851 tractor, JD 3032 tractor, Husky 346, 372 and 562XP's. Stihl MS180 and MS361 1998 and 2006 3/4 Dodge 5.9 Cummins 4x4's and a 1966 Chevy C60 w/ dump bed.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2008, 03:39:51 pm »
You need to import some, the wood bugs are getting thick. Your gonna have Swiss cheese oak. :D

Pre-commercial thinning pays off. :)

'If she wants to play lumberjack, she's going to have to learn to handle her end of the log.'
Dirty Harry

Offline LeeB

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2008, 03:53:29 pm »
I'd have to export some. I'm an Arkansas hillbilly now. :D
'98 LT40HDD/Lombardini, Case 580L, Cat D4C, Ford 851 tractor, JD 3032 tractor, Husky 346, 372 and 562XP's. Stihl MS180 and MS361 1998 and 2006 3/4 Dodge 5.9 Cummins 4x4's and a 1966 Chevy C60 w/ dump bed.

Offline OneWithWood

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Re: Grubs killing my trees?
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2008, 11:42:37 am »
Just don't export that one that Arky painted the bill white on and got all that media attention  :D
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