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Factors Related to Incidence of Hypoxylon Cankers in Aspen and Survival of Cankered Trees

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Factors associated with the incidence of new bole cankers in Populus tremuloides caused by Hypoxylon mammatum were identified from 8 years' observation on 74 plots distributed over the aspen range of northern Minnesota. These factors were: length and intensity of defoliation during an infestation by Malacosoma disstria immediately preceding this study, plot density, presence of Saperda calcarata, prevalence of Hypoxylon cankers in the upper bole initially, crown class, crown density, and possibly site index. Prior defoliation remained an important factor over the entire 8-year period. Outcome following infection is analyzed by life table. Trees with cankers below the crown suffered 96 percent mortality within 6 years. For trees with cankers higher in the bole, deaths occurred over a longer period and were due directly to infection only when infection subsequently occurred on or spread to the lower bole. Trees with cankers in the upper bole which developed new leaders (28 percent) had subsequent survival similar to that of uninfected trees. We estimate that most of the trees with cankers in the upper bole which failed to develop new leaders would be dead within a period of 12 to 15 years after infection. Forest Sci. 27:461-476.

Keywords: Malacosoma disstria; Saperda; defoliation; life table

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Principal Biometrician, USDA Forest Service, North Central Forest Experiment Station, St. Paul, Minnesota, 55108

Publication date: September 1, 1981

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