The Press Democrat has a front page article on Sudden Oak Death (SOD) today. http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20131009/articles/131009461?title=Staying-vigilant-for-Sudden-Oak-Death. The writer spoke with Dennis Searles and Bruce McConnell, both OSMA Board members, about SOD in our open space. I felt the article didn’t indicate how truly widespread SOD is in our area. The SOD Blitz folks can only test a few trees, but we have had confirmation from our urban foresters of many, many California Bay Laurels with SOD – they are the trees that spread the pathogen to our oaks. If you have oaks on your property, they are valuable! Have them looked at by a licensed professional, and if you’re serious about trying to keep those trees, have them sprayed at least once a year (our urban forester suggests it twice a year) with Agri-Fos and Pentra-Bark. (You can do it yourself or The Hitmen can do it). Oaks are under attack by the invasive Douglas-fir, landscape watering and diseases – we have to do our best to preserve them, as they are a main source of food and shelter for hundreds of species. The Douglas-fir, which is a short-lived, fire-hazardous tree (a weed, in my mind), doesn’t even come close to it in habitat importance.