Conferences bring disease experts together

By Mike Cruickshank
Natural Resources Canada
October 6, 2017
Category: Special Feature
Region: Canada

Plant diseases threaten many of Canada’s most important timber crops and tree species. Over the years forest pathologists from Mexico to Alaska have worked together to develop important knowledge on how to manage North American forest diseases. Experts work across borders to discuss climate change, mistletoe, foliage and twig diseases, hazard trees, nursery disease, root disease and rusts. Like people, plants catch viruses too. Blueberry Scorch Virus infects our blueberry crops in BC, and infected plants su er with sluggish growth that reduces yields. Another example is Blister Rust of white pine trees; this fungal disease severely a ects this tree’s survival. Pathologists use a range of tools to combat these diseases, but not creating the conditions for them to ourish is one of the most important steps.

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