Kansas State University


K-State Turf and Landscape Blog

Month: February 2017

Cut-and-burn those pine wilt infected trees

(Megan Kennelly)

Got pine wilt?


Get that tree outta there! Chop and burn or chip, making sure not to leave stumps. Get this done by April 1!

You know the drill. This disease has been killing our pines for decades. It is caused by a nematode that is spread by a beetle. The nematodes and beetles spend the winter in dead and dying trees. The beetles, loaded up with nematodes, start emerging in late April or early May and spread to new trees.

In the eastern 2/3 of the state, if you have a dead pine, there is a decent chance it has pine wilt. We have detected pine wilt a handful of times in western Kansas too.

Get those pine-wilt infected dead trees out of the landscape to help prevent spread to surrounding trees.

Pines have multiple problems though, and if you have any doubt you can work with your KSRE Extension agent to ship a sample up to KSU. For more information on pine diseases, check out our publication about Pine Diseases in Kansas

KSU Tree Reference

(Megan Kennelly, KSU Plant Pathology)

If you attended one of our K-State educational events this winter you might have had the chance to do some hands-on work with our Tree and Shrub Problems in Kansas book.

Did you mean to get a copy, but didn’t get around to it yet? If so you can download the pdf for free or order a print copy on our KSU Extension Bookstore.


Or, call the Extension Distribution Bookstore at 785-532-5830 to order a copy. Ask for the book by name, or by its publication number (MF3132).


Iris leaf spot – spring cleaning to disrupt fungal life cycle

(Megan Kennelly, KSU Plant Pathology)

Irises are a popular plant, often grown in large groups. Iris leaf spot is a fungus that can cause mild spotting to severe dieback.The fungus spreads by spores that are dispersed in wet weather.

Red-brown spots with yellow halo:

A closer view – the black bumps are spore-producing structures:


Another close-up view of one spot:

Spots can coalesce to cover a large area

More significant dieback:

Where does that fungus spend the winter? In old infected leaves. Get those outta there to reduce your risk of infection in the new year. Clearing out old infected plant tissue breaks the life cycle.

More information about managing iris leaf spot is available in a recent article by Ward Upham in the KSU Horticulture News


Congrats to KSU alum for prestigious environmental award

(Megan Kennelly)

We are proud that our K-State alum Josh Heptig is the winner of the President’s Award for Environmental Stewardship from the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America! Way to go!


You can read all about Josh and his innovations on the golf course here:


He currently works in California.