PR – The pathogen that causes Sudden Oak Death, a plant disease that has killed large numbers of oak trees and other native plant species on the West Coast and in Europe, has been found in Jackson County. Phytophthera ramorum, the causal agent of Sudden Oak Death, has been confirmed in ornamental plants at 10 Walmart locations across the state. The issue was first uncovered by an Indiana confirmation at a Walmart in late May. 18 states in total received the possibly affected plants. Though Sudden Oak Death affects oaks and other trees and plants, it poses no threats to humans, pets, livestock, or food sources. Walmart and Rural King are participating in voluntary recalls of the potentially affected plants remaining at their sites. Positive confirmations have been made on the following plants and varieties in Illinois or other states:
Rhododendron – Cat Cunningham Blush, Firestorm, Holden, Minnetonka, Nova Zembla, Percy Wiseman, Purpureum Elegans, Roseum Elegans, Wojnars Purple, and Lilac – common purple and Persian lime.