Progression of sugarberry ( Celtis laevigata ) dieback and mortality in the southeastern United States.

Abstract

The southeastern United States has been experiencing unexplained sugarberry (Celtis laevigata) mortality for over a decade, representing one of the most severe and widespread Celtis mortality episodes ever reported from North America. Here we describe external symptoms, progression of mortality, and the known geographic extent of the problem. More than half of all trees monitored at one site within the affected area died over five years of observation. Although many trees died within a year of first exhibiting symptoms (e.g., small yellow leaves, branch dieback, premature leaf fall), many others continued living for years after becoming symptomatic. A preliminary insecticide trial found no improvements in survivorship among trees treated with insecticides, emamectin benzoate and imidacloprid, relative to control trees. Our findings suggest the problem will likely continue and become more widespread in the coming years.

  • Citation: Poole, Emilee M; Ulyshen, Michael D; Horn, Scott; Anderson, Patrick; Bates, Chip; Barnes, Chris. 2021. Progression of Sugarberry ( Celtis laevigata ) Dieback and Mortality in the Southeastern United States . Journal of Forestry. 119(3): 266-274. https://doi.org/10.1093/jofore/fvab005.
  • Keywords: forest health, tree mortality, native species
  • Posted Date: March 16, 2022
  • Modified Date: March 17, 2022
  • Print Publications Are No Longer Available

    In an ongoing effort to be fiscally responsible, the Southern Research Station (SRS) will no longer produce and distribute hard copies of our publications. Many SRS publications are available at cost via the Government Printing Office (GPO). Electronic versions of publications may be downloaded, printed, and distributed.

    Publication Notes

    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
    • Our online publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat. During the capture process some typographical errors may occur. Please contact the SRS webmaster if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • To view this article, download the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader.