Con Artists Target Black Walnut Trees

Con Artists Target Black Walnut Trees

Con artists in Michigan are targeting black walnut trees. Con artists in Michigan are targeting black walnut trees.

September 18, 2015

NASHVILLE, Tenn (RFDTV) - The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development is warning residents about con artists targeting black walnut trees. The office has received reports of log buyers falsely telling woodlot owners that Thousand Cankers Disease has been detected in Michigan and then pressuring owners to sell the trees. Consumers should know Thousand Cankers Disease has not been detected in Michigan.    

Read "Scammers On the Prowl for Black Walnut Trees" and get more from the Michigan departments of Agriculture and Rural Development and Natural Resources.

Michigan’s forests are home to approximately 8.5 million black walnut trees with an economic value of more the $86 million and ecological value as a food source for birds, mammals and other wildlife. There are also more than 80 walnut growers in Michigan with approximately 4,000 trees in nut production.

Black walnut trees in many western states, and in Tennessee and Pennsylvania, are already being negatively impacted by TCD. The beetle and fungus can be transported into new areas in walnut logs, firewood and staves used for woodworking.

If black walnut trees have wilting leaves or dying branches during the summer, check the tree carefully. If there is no obvious cause of the problem, such as a broken branch, note the location of the suspect tree and report it. Identifying the tiny walnut twig beetles and confirming the presence of TCD requires specialized expertise.

Thousand Cankers Disease is caused by a combination of small beetles boring into walnut branches, and a fungus introduced by the beetles. The crowns of affected trees begin dying and the tree eventually succumbs. 

If TCD is eventually detected, it would be announced by the state identifying the affected areas, outlining the response plan and quarantine restrictions would apply to the affected area. This is often only a small portion of one county.

Story provided by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

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