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How to Sample for Oak Wilt Central TX

How to Sample for Oak Wilt Austin TX

How samples are taken and handled is vital to the success of a laboratory analysis. By following the steps outlined below, the chance of recovery is greatly improved.

  1. Select symptomatic limbs from trees.
  2. Dead limbs and those in an advanced state of decline cannot be used for isolation.
  3. Samples should be 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter and 6 inches long.
  4. Send in leaf tissue from sampled limbs. These will help to diagnose the problem if the oak wilt fungus is not isolated from the limb samples. Keep the two samples separate.
  5. Keep samples cool during sampling and shipping, but don’t freeze tissue.
  6. Ship samples in sealed plastic bags. Do not add water or wet materials to the sample.
  7. Ship in an ice chest with a frozen freezer block.
  8. Ship by bus, overnight mail or bring in person to the laboratory. The samples should be shipped on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. The samples will arrive at the laboratory, so that they can be processed that week.
  9. Results from the isolations will be available in 2 to 3 weeks. Reply time depends on how fast the fungus develops in culture.
  10. A Certified Arborist should be consulted, prior to collection of samples, and if at all possible, should do the sampling.


Oak Wilt may be confirmed by isolating the fungus from diseased tissues in a laboratory. Samples can be submitted to:

Texas Plant Disease Diagnostic Laboratory
Texas Agricultural Extension Service
1500 Research Pkwy, Rm 130
MS. 2589 TAMU
College Station, TX 77843-2132
Phone: 979-845-8033

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