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Country Discussion Topics
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Pine bark beetle problem
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big fred    Posted 03-17-2003 at 08:27:27       [Reply]  [No Email]
I have a second home in the Santa Rosa mountains south of Palm Springs, CA. It's in a forested area populated with pinyon pines and junipers. We're fighting a battle with pine park beetles, they've killed several of our pinyon pines already. Anybody here dealt with this problem before? I live about a thousand miles away in Washington, so I don't get to spend much time dealing with it, but I make occasional business trips to California, and my wife spends quite a bit of time there, so it isn't as if it would go untreated for several months, but we can't spend a lot of time dealing with it. I'd sure hate to see all the trees die. Will it help to apply fertilizer to the healthy trees to make them more able to withstand attack?

Good Lord    Posted 03-17-2003 at 13:59:19       [Reply]  [No Email]
Hi Fred.
I live in the North Sierras, and have lots of problems with bark beetles. The drought conditions of the past few years make the trees much more susceptible. The arborists here tell us the best thing you can do is irrigate every 30 days if no rain falls in that period, and we have a professional pesticide company come out twice a year to spray. I don't know what he uses but it sure stinks! I was gonna ask him what it was but ended up high-tailing it the other way. Anyway, after two years of doing this, the trees look much better and are not pouring out heaps of sap. By the way, I started having problems with carpenter ants once the beetles started, and malathion seems to kill them.
Good Luck.

big fred    Posted 03-17-2003 at 14:24:41       [Reply]  [No Email]
Well, we had a horrific rain there Saturday, so I guess we're good for another month.

Randy    Posted 03-17-2003 at 09:37:34       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Fred, just saw this problem written somewhere else in the last few days. Just can't remember where. Probably the best thing is to call an arborist in that area. If fertilizer was applied perhaps it would help with a systemic insecticide.

M.R.    Posted 03-17-2003 at 09:26:10       [Reply]  [No Email]
HI Fred, We have different climate & tree species here and had a beetle problem around a couple of decades or so ago during a drought cycle. The timber stands that were thinned with a good spacing were not stressed as much & were able to pitch out the beetle with hardly any mortality.

"Will it help to apply fertilizer to the healthy trees to make them more able to withstand attack?" Yes, [Not always cost effective]

big fred    Posted 03-17-2003 at 10:10:01       [Reply]  [No Email]
Between the house and the road there are still a few good healthy trees. I'd like to save them if possible. On the other side of the house it isn't as critical, and I could stand thinning them there.

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