USDA Forest Service

Forest Health Protection, Southern Region

Forest Service Headquarters
FHP Headquarters
Southern Region
State and Private Forestry
  FirstGov Link
  Evaluate Our Service
We welcome your comments and suggestions for improvement.

USDA Forest Service
Forest Health Protection
Region 8
1720 Peachtree Road, NW
Room 816 N
Atlanta, GA 30309

Phone: (404) 347-7478
Fax: (404) 347-1880

United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service.

Florida Forest Service USDA-APHIS Georgia Forestry Commission South Carolina Forestry Commission USDA Forest Service

Laurel Wilt



A species of Raffaelea has been shown to be the cause of a vascular wilt disease known as laurel wilt, a severe disease on redbay ( Persea borbonia ) and other members of the Lauraceae in the Atlantic coastal plains of the southeastern USA . The pathogen is likely native to Asia and probably was introduced to the USA in the mycangia of the exotic redbay ambrosia beetle, Xyleborus glabratus . Analyses of rDNA sequences indicate that the pathogen is most closely related to other ambrosia beetle symbionts in the monophyletic genus Raffaelea in the Ophiostomatales . The asexual genus Raffaelea includes Ophiostoma-like symbionts of xylem-feeding ambrosia beetles, and the laurel wilt pathogen has been named Raffaelea lauricola sp. nov. (Harrington et al. 2008).


Colonies of Raffaelea lauricola growing from diseased wood chips in culture (A), and conidia and conidiophores under magnification (B). Photos by T.S. Schubert , Florida DACS Division of Plant Industry (A) and S.W. Freadrich, USDA Forest Service (B).




Additional Information

  • The Laurel Wilt and Other Ambrosia Fungi, Similarities to the Dutch Elm Disease Cycle, and Management Implications - Thomas C. Harrington, ISU, 1/19/2007 (Slideshow, 1.9 MB)


< Back


[ Adobe® PDF documents on this page require the free Adobe Acrobat Reader. See Disclaimers ]



USDA Forest Service - Forest Health Protection, Southern Region
Last Modified: Monday, 16 December 2013 at 14:18:30 CST

USDA logo which links to the department's national site. Forest Service logo which links to the agency's national site.