Sudden Oak Death (SOD)

Sudden Oak Death, or SOD, is a forest disease caused by Phytophthora ramorum, a fungus-like pathogen. It can be fatal to some plants, including coast live oak, black oak, Shreve oak and tanoak. P. ramorum affects different species in a variety of ways and is spread through a wide number of host species, including the California bay laurel and rhododendron varieties. The pathogen itself is spread by wind-blown rain.

UC Berkeley Forest Pathology and Mycology Research Lab

Dr. Matteo Garbelotto’s UC Berkeley research lab in Forest Pathology and Mycology organizes annual SOD-blitz citizen trainings, informs the public of annual new findings, and provides training on recommended treatments to prevent SOD.

Treating and Preventing the Spread of SOD

Canopy recommends following Dr. Matteo Garbelotto’s UC Berkeley laboratory’s recommended prevention treatment, which is updated yearly based on research findings.

Please prevent the spread of SOD by cleaning foliage and mud off of shoes, tires, and pets before leaving an infected area.

Citizen Scientist SOD-Blitz Participation

To protect our oaks, Canopy partnered with UC Berkeley to organize volunteers to participate in a weekend SOD-blitz in Palo Alto, on June 1, 2013. Canopy provided volunteers with hot-spot routes to collect samples. After collecting samples and tagging trees, volunteers returned the samples to a designated drop box, and UC Berkeley researchers processed the samples.

In October 2013,┬áDr. Garbelotto revealed his lab’s findings, and provided updated training for treating oaks, based on the results.

San Jose Mercury News, Citizen-Scientists To Help Map Sudden Oak Fungus

UC Berkeley SOD-blitz

Where can I find more information?

The following websites provide good information about Sudden Oak Death Syndrome:

Dr. Matteo Garbelotto’s UC Berkeley research lab in Forest Pathology and Mycology

The California Oak Mortality Task Force

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