Sudden oak death
Blueberry Sudden oak death Phytophthora ramorum
Sudden oak death symptoms in blueberry
Scientific Classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Chromalveolata
Phylum: Heterokontophyta
Class: Oomycetes
Order: Peronosporales
Family: Pythiaceae
Genus: Phytophthora
Species: Phytophthora ramorum

Sudden Oak Death' is the common name of a disease caused by the oomycete plant pathogen Phytophthora ramorum. The disease kills oak and other species of tree and has had devastating effects on the oak populations in California and Oregon as well as also being present in Europe.



Symptoms include bleeding cankers on the tree's trunk and dieback of the foliage, in many cases eventually leading to the death of the tree.

Other speciesEdit

Characteristic symptoms are dark spots on foliage and in some hosts the dieback of the stems and twigs.[1]


Several effective compounds have been found; some of the most effective include mefenoxam, metalaxyl, dimethomorph, and fenamidone. Many of these studies have converged upon the following conclusions: chemical compounds are, in general, more effective as preventatives than in curatives; when used preventatively, chemical compounds must be reapplied at various intervals; and chemical compounds can mask the symptoms of P. ramorum infection in the host plant, potentially interfering with inspections for quarantine efforts.[2]


One of the most important aspects of P. ramorum control involves interrupting the human-mediated movement of the pathogen by ensuring that infested materials do not move from location to location. In most cases, cleanliness practices involve ridding potentially infested surfaces—such as shoes, vehicles, and pets—of foliage and mud before leaving the infested area.


  1. Werres, S., et al., Phytophthora ramorum sp. nov., a new pathogen on Rhododendron and Viburnun. Mycological Research, 2001. 105(10): p. 1155–1165.
  2. Kliejunas, J. T. 2007b. Chapter 5: Management and Control. Sudden Oak Death and Phytophthora ramorum: A Summary of the Literature. California Oak Mortality Task Force.
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