White Rot Fungus

Date March 23, 2023

Author TreeNewal Staff

White-rot fungus can cause serious damage to Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, trees and requires help from professional arborists. This wood-destroying fungus attacks both dead and living trees, causing them to age prematurely and die. It can also present a danger to people and structures.

What Is White-Rot Fungus?

Image via Flickr by Dr. Hans-Günter Wagner

White-rot fungus breaks down a tree’s tough layer of lignin, as well as its cellulose and hemicellulose layers. This fungus is the only one that can eat all the components of wood. In nature, white-rot fungus will eventually break the tree down, contributing to the earth’s carbon cycle. The remaining components of the tree ultimately become nutrients for the soil. When white-rot fungus attacks live landscape trees, it can cause them serious damage.

How Dangerous Is White-Rot Fungus on Trees?

The decay caused by white-rot fungus can weaken tree limbs and branches, making them susceptible to falling on people, buildings, or objects below. White-rot fungus severely affects the structural integrity of the infected tree and weakens the tree’s systems. A weak tree can attract other pests or diseases, potentially causing it further harm. If a professional arborist treats the tree in a timely manner, however, it has a good chance of survival.

How To Identify White-Rot Fungus

Arborists can identify white-rot fungus by noticing changes to the tree’s bark. When infested, the bark gets a soft, spongy texture, and the wood becomes discolored. White-rot fungus turns the wood a yellow or white color unlike brown-rot fungus, which turns the bark a dark brown color. The white-rot fungus also produces a mushroomlike fruit, which can be a telltale sign of an affected tree. White-rot fungus fruits come in various sizes and shapes, from single stems and caps to colonies of fruits that spread throughout the affected tree. 

How To Prevent and Treat White-Rot Fungus

White-rot fungus typically attacks weakened or old trees. Having a professional tree-care service technician who will nourish the soil, manage the tree’s irrigation, and prune dead and diseased branches is the best way to prevent a white-rot fungus infestation.

Once white-rot fungus infests the tree, the arborist will need to treat it. These professionals can apply specific technical treatments to ward off the tree fungus and help eliminate it before the tree becomes severely damaged. If the white-rot fungus infestation is untreatable, the arborist might decide tree removal is necessary to prevent the spread of the fungus and keep people and structures safe from falling limbs and branches.

White-rot fungus is a serious disease that needs professional help to prevent and treat. Our team at TreeNewal can identify and treat white-rot fungus on your landscape trees. We are a full-service sustainable tree-care company with certified ISA-certified arborists who can apply technical treatments to fight off tree fungi like white-rot. People living in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, area can call us at 817-533-8438 or contact us through our website so we can help home and business owners with all their Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, tree needs.