Canadian County OSU Extension Service

Fall Clean-Up

Often you hear about spring cleaning, but it is just as important to do a little falling cleaning.  Cleaning your landscape at this time of year will help to insure that you do not over winter any unwanted pests or diseases.


If you have not removed the annual plants that have expired, now is the time.  Walk around your landscape and find all the dead plant material.  You will want to identify the healthy plant material from the plant debris that you may think is diseased or may be housing pests. 


The disease free and pest free plant material should be added to your compost pile.  If you don’t already have a compost pile, establishing one now will give you a good supply of organic matter in the spring. 


The plant material that is diseased or containing pests should not be added to your compost pile.  Instead, this material should be destroyed to prevent overwintering of the disease or pest and to help prevent further contamination next spring. 


Dothistroma Needle Blight and Diplodia Tip Blight are two common pine diseases in Oklahoma that can be controlled with good sanitation.  One symptom of Dothistroma is a banding on the pine needles which often appears in fall, although the infection occurs earlier in the growing season. 


Symptoms of Diplodia include stunted terminal growth, browning needles, and an excessive amount of resin exuding from the terminal buds. 


Properly identifying diseased material and destroying it will help your garden get off to a good start in the spring.


If you would like additional information on Dothistroma Needle Blight and Diplodia Tip Blight, please visit our website to find the OSU fact sheet, “Common Diseases of Conifers in Oklahoma.”


Until next time - STOP, LOOK, and ENJOY!

~ Casey

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