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Defoliation of Lawsons cypress

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Formerly known as the Forest Research Institute, Scion has been a leader in research relating to forest health for over 50 years. The Rotorua-based Crown Research Institute continues to provide science that will protect all forests from damage caused by insect pests, pathogens and weeds. The information presented below arises from these research activities.

From Forest Health News No. 50, February 1996.

On and off over the past two to three years I have noted Lawsons cypress defoliation on the west coast of the South Island. A large number of samples have been sent to NZ FRI with no clear pathogen being isolated although the fungus Stigmina thujina is consistently found associated with the problem. At first glance the affected stands look as though they may be troubled by wet feet but the trees are on a range of sites and at different locations. Stands which had no sign of defoliation a year ago now look very thin with active needle cast often being seen. Many of the affected stands I have visited for the past ten or so years and up until recently they have been full crowned. If any one has seen recent cast on Lawsons or have any bright ideas I would like to hear from you.

(Paul Bradbury, MOF, Christchurch)

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