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Phytophthora - The effect of the disease

Because they are relatively new diseases we do not fully know what species can be affected. However we do know that Phytophthora ramorum can affect the following trees and shrubs:

  • Rhododendrons
  • Vacciniums (Bilberry)
  • Viburnums
  • Arbutus
  • Camelias
  • Hamamelis (witch-hazel)
  • Leucothoe
  • Pieris
  • Syringa (lilac)
  • Taxus (yew)
  • Quercus (oaks) - mainly Qu. rubra (red oak), cerris (Turkey oak) and ilex (holm oak)
  • Fagus (beech)
  • Castenea (sweet chestnut)
  • Picea (Sitka spruce)
  • Pseudotsuga (Douglas fir)
  • Chamaecyparis (Lawson cypress)
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Our native oaks (Qu. robur and petraea) appear to be less susceptible. You can therefore see that it has potential to cause serious harm.

Phytophthora kernoviae has been found on rhododendron and beech trees and a number of other plants including Magnolia and Pieris. It was also found on native heathland in Cornwall (on Bilberry) in December 2007.