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Need Some Diagnostic Help?

September 12, 2005
I am always looking for helpful books, CDs, fact sheets, and Web sites to use in plant problem diagnosis. Here are a few items that you may not have heard about yet but that are extremely helpful to staff at the University of Illinois Plant Clinic.

Diseases of Woody Ornamentals and Trees in Nurseries, edited by Ronald K. Jones and D. Michael Benson, 2001. This soft-bound book is 482 pages on disease problems in nurseries, but the information is just as useful to diagnosis of trees planted in landscapes. One hundred and one concise chapters get right to the point, including symptoms, methods of disease spread, and management. There are chapters on general diseases that affect many hosts, chapters by tree host, and chapters on disease management. There are 89 different authors or contributors to the text, mostly plant pathologists working in research or Extension. The pictures are concentrated in one section but include 160 color plates. Amazingly, this book sells for $89. It is printed by APS (American Phytopathological Society) Press; ISBN number, 0-89054-264-3. Go to the APS Press Web page, http://www.shopapspress.org/disofwoodora.html, to learn more about the book and how to order it.

Abiotic Disorders of Landscape Plants, A Diagnostic Guide, by Laurence R. Costello, Edward J. Perry, Nelda P. Matheny, J. Michael Henry, and Pamela M. Geisel, 2003. This book is also a soft-cover, keeping cost reasonable. There are 242 pages discussing noninfectious plant problems such as drought, nutrient deficit, wind damage, gas injury, girdling and kinked roots, and graft incompatibility. There are also chapters on diagnosing abiotic disorders, lab analysis of soil, water, and tissue samples, and problems that resemble abiotic disorders. I particularly like the color pictures that are spread throughout the text. This book is a University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources publication, #3420; ISBN number, 1-879906-58-9. The cost is only $35 on the ANR Communication Services Web site, http://anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu/InOrder/Shop/Shop.asp. You can also call (800)994-8849 to order from University of California.

A few new CDs are available from the American Phytopathological Society with images of plant diseases. Their entire CD-ROM collection can be viewed at http://www.shopapspress.org/titles-by-category-cd-rom-collection.html. These CDs may be of particular interest: Diseases of Herbaceous Ornamentals and Roses, Diseases of Woody Ornamentals and Trees, Nutrient Deficiencies and Toxicities of Plants. There are also CDs with images of diseases of fruit, vegetables, and turf. Read the terms of use and license agreement before buying CDs. Prices start at $55.

Author: Nancy Pataky


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