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Wrong Tree


Recently there was a mention in The Independent of the death of a Monterey cypress in the Douglas Family Preserve, and of a plan to replace it later this year. [“Douglas Preserve Replacement Tree Removed,” 5/29/13, independent.com/wasjapanesenotcanative.]

Monterey cypress when grown outside its native range (Monterey Peninsula and nearby Monterey Bay coast) is subject to cypress canker (Seiridium cardinale), and will experience considerable dieback, and premature death. Some have thought that salt spray retards growth of the canker in the native habitat, but even trees along the immediate coast in Santa Barbara experience considerable dieback, requiring expensive maintenance and removal of prematurely dead individuals. It should not be planted in the Douglas Family Preserve or elsewhere in Santa Barbara. Other trees to avoid are Monterey Pine (susceptible to bark beetles), Canary Island palm (dies prematurely from Fusarium wilt), Myoporum (leaf galls from psyllids) and Eugenia (also subject to psyllid leaf galls).

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