Message from an arborist

13 01 2011

Yesterday I received this email from Don Cox, an arborist who has been involved with the Sudden Oak Death problem since the very beginning. He has agreed to let me post it here:

Dear Dr. Klinger,

As a California arborist involved with the “Sudden Oak Death” syndrome since 1995, I have been aware of your work in this area. I know you are on the right track with ‘Sudden Oak Life’ and mineralization of the soils.

Since the 1990’s even before we had a positive ID of P. ramorum as a primary factor in SOD and the emphasis was directed on the pathogen as the primary cause, I believed that there was a complex set of circumstances for the advance of this species decline. I saved some significant trees for my clients in the midst of SOD killing fields of Marin, Sonoma and Santa Cruz counties, with a comprehensive PHC (plant health care) approach including soil re-mineralization. I see that you have taken up this comprehensive approach with soil health as the focus and you have had the determination to stick with your convictions in spite of the opposition.

I’ve been reviewing the Sudden Oak Life website and the results you are getting with your tree care programs; you have a lot of good information there. Keep up the good work.

Don Cox

ISA Certified Arborist WE-3023A, Tree Maintenance and Plant Health Care Advisor

Don has pointed me to two important websites: – which has a wealth of information on the use of minerals to improve plant health and soil fertility – with information and services on health care for trees of the Central Coast of California

Thank you Don for your support of a broader, more ecological approach in addressing Sudden Oak Death.




One response

16 02 2017

I agree that factors like soil health need to be considered when assessing tree diseases. This ecological approach seems to be coming more into Arboriculture theory.

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