Harvest intensity and competition control impacts on loblolly pine fusiform rust incidenceThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
The Long Term Soil Productivity experiment tests the effects of soil compaction, surface organic matter removal, and understory control on net primary productivity. An unintended consequence of these treatments may be an effect on the incidence of fusiform rust [Cronartium quercuum (Berk.) Miy. ex Shirai f. sp. fusiforme Burdsall et Snow]. Loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) is highly susceptible to rust infection, and the combination of soil disturbances and the absence of understory may provide an environment favorable to fusiform rust. This paper describes the treatment effects on the annual incidence of fusiform rust in an 11-year-old loblolly pine plantation at the Croatan National Forest near New Bern, NC. Generally, increasing levels of organic matter removal resulted in increased incidence of fusiform rust. This trend was consistent throughout the experiment, but the magnitude of this effect diminished with time. Soil compaction did not have an effect on fusiform rust occurrence at any time during this study. Competition control resulted in significantly higher occurrence of stem galls after the trees were 5 years old.