Spring and Summer Danger, Oak Wilt can kill your most valuable trees!

Real Estate Agent with Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, EXP #1 in Forest Land Mgmt

Spring and Summer Danger, Oak Wilt can kill your most valuable trees!oak trees

          Oak is one of the highest valued forests for reasons beyond the beauty it adds to Wisconsin woods.  Not only does it produce high-value lumber, which goes into fine furniture and trim, but it is an essential component of wildlife habitats, including that of deer and turkey. 

Unfortunately, oak regeneration is often difficult due to overgrazing by wildlife and a reluctance of landowners to create the openings in their forests required for oak seedlings to thrive. 

Growth in our Oak forest declines annually due to old age and disease.  Oak wilt is an aggressive disease that kills thousands of oak trees every year.  Although there is no cure for the disease, it can be identified, prevented and controlled.

The disease is most prevalent and lethal in the southern and central parts of the state, where certain counties with high oak populations have been devastated.

forestLandowners can save their forests by planning ahead for the inevitable oak wilt.

Companies like Woodland Management Service offer professional evaluations to promote proper management by not only controlling an existing oak wilt problem, but preventing it as well.


Trees are often infected with oak wilt at a rapid rate due to the way in which it spreads through the root system.  Because tree roots often touch and graft to one another, the fungus that causes oak wilt in one tree can spread through the underground network like wildfire.  Early prevention is landowners’ best counter-attack.


When it comes to preventing oak wilt disease, having a diverse forest is a landowners’ best bet.  Black oak, pin oak, and northern red oak species are highly susceptible to the disease.  Foresters work with landowners to diversify the land.  Doing so prevents the disease from spreading through the root system and reduces its impact on the rest of the property.


If prevention is no longer an option, early detection can significantly reduce the detrimental effects of oak wilt.  The disease is most commonly identified in red oaks.  Symptoms include rapid leaf discoloration and wilting.  As the disease progresses and within a few weeks, the tree begins to lose its leaves.  The way the infection is spread usually results in whole groups of oak trees dying.


Understanding the symptoms of oak wilt disease can save large portions of forestland.  Once detected, the disease can be controlled in a variety of ways.  Quarantine zones involve cutting down oak trees around the infected area to prevent the disease from spreading.  Another option involves herbicide and root pruning.  Professional foresters will diagnose the problem and suggest a solution to protect land while keeping the landowners’ best interest in mind.


 By contacting a forester for a professional evaluation, private landowners in Wisconsin can prevent oak wilt disease and preserve their land for generations to come.






For more information about oak wilt disease and how it can be prevented or controlled, please call Bob Crane at 715-204-9663

Comments (14)

Joe Petrowsky
Mortgage Consultant, Right Trac Financial Group, Inc. NMLS # 2709 - Manchester, CT
Your Mortgage Consultant for Life

Good morning Bob. Thank you for the education and valuable information. You shared lots of good reasons for you to be hired by folks that own large parcels of timber land.

Make it a great week!

May 26, 2014 06:22 PM
Debbie Gartner
The Flooring Girl - White Plains, NY
The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers

Yes, this is great info, Bob.  I wasn't aware of this, and so glad you can help many solve oak wilt and/or prevent/reduce it.

May 26, 2014 07:54 PM
Alan Kirkpatrick
Austin Texas Homes - Round Rock, TX
Alan in Austin

Hey Bob: Very good post. I learned a great deal that I did not know. Have a wonderful week. 

May 26, 2014 09:28 PM
Bette Gottwald
UNITED REAL ESTATE | Central PA - Mechanicsburg, PA
"Bet"on Central PA Real Estate!

Bob, Thank you for the excellent post on oak wilt disease, it appears we may have some diseased trees in the park across the street from our home.  I placed a phone call to the Penn State Extension office, and they will be coming over to take a look.

May 27, 2014 12:00 AM
John McCormack, CRS
Albuquerque Homes Realty - Albuquerque, NM
Honesty, Integrity, Results, Experienced. HIRE Me!

Thank you for sharing Bob.  I have learned something new this morning.

May 27, 2014 12:25 AM
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

I wonder if Oak Leaf Fungus is related to Sudden Oak Death we see here in California? Some trees, like our California bay laurel, are carriers but don't succumb. Our grand oak trees do.

May 27, 2014 12:38 AM
John Meussner
Mortgages in AZ, CA, CO, DE, FL, GA, MD, MN, MT, NC, NJ, NV, OK, OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI - Fair Oaks, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Fair Oaks, CA 484-680-4852

Another informative post, Bob.  I had never heard of Oak wilt, but it's nice to see that you know how to control and prevent it from devastating the trees.

May 27, 2014 07:35 AM
Nick T Pappas
Assoc. Broker ABR, CRS, SFR, e-Pro, @Homes Realty Group, Broker/Providence Property Mgmnt, LLC Huntsville AL - Huntsville, AL
Madison & Huntsville Alabama Real Estate Resource

Bob, I've heard of Oak Wilt before, but had no idea of how it spread or that it can be as big of a problem to other trees.  We have a lot of oaks in northern Illinois but not like the Wisconsin forests.  I have one very healthy Pin Oak in the back yard of my Illinois home.

May 27, 2014 08:13 AM
Ron Marshall
Marshall Enterprises - Saint Michael, MN
Birdhouse Builder Extraordinaire

We have two huge oak trees in our front yard, Bob.  I hope they survive.  Best to you!

May 27, 2014 09:30 AM
Scott Larson
BHHS/Utah Properties - Park City, UT
Park City, Utah Real Estate News

Hi Bob, I wasn't even aware of oak wilt, but now I am.  You seem like you know exactly what you are looking for and the best ways to mitigate it's spread, hopefully landowners in your area are listening.

May 27, 2014 10:11 AM
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

I have never heard of oak wilt before. My grandparents had two giant oak trees in their yard. This is great information for everyone. 

May 27, 2014 12:43 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

My area has been hit hard.  It has given me an almost endless supply of

May 27, 2014 12:57 PM
Kristin Hamilton CA Realtor
Berkshire Hathaway California Realty - Beaumont, CA
(909) 557-6966- Specialize 55+ Communties Banning

Hi Bob,

We have bark beetles in our national forest of the San Bernardino Mountains. They have been cutting down trees 365 days a year for a few years because of all the dead trees. It is very sad to see so many dead trees.

Jun 01, 2014 04:00 PM
Nicholas Crane
Woodland Companies - Cadott, WI
Managing & Appraising Forest Land

Thanks for sharing these reports, our clients gain value from of this type of information.

Apr 17, 2020 06:18 PM