a strange oak tree
April 13, 2008 3:51 PM   Subscribe

What is happening to this Oak tree?

On a walk this afternoon we noticed this Oak tree - what is happening to it, how does it start and how will it end?
posted by oliverst to Home & Garden (5 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Do you mean the bulbous trunk? It looks burl-like, although it looks like the stress that would have caused a burl was more prolonged than usual.
posted by mudpuppie at 4:01 PM on April 13, 2008

It could be a giant gall caused by wasps.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 4:50 PM on April 13, 2008

if that really is a gigantic burl, it could be worth alot of money
posted by swbarrett at 6:58 PM on April 13, 2008

Don't know if it helps, but I'm not sure that's an oak tree. It's a little hard to tell from the picture, though.
posted by attercoppe at 9:13 AM on April 14, 2008

It's hard to diagnose diseases just from pictures, but this really looks like a fungus infection has caused severe galling. Fungal infections of oaks (and other trees) are common, and often kill the tree. In this case, the galling is so severe that the tree will probably die fairly soon, especially if there is some stress on it from something such as a drought. The tree probably was wounded at some point, which allowed the fungus to enter the bark. Mowing and pruning injuries can often result in fungal infections. This is really a beautiful disease picture though...any mycologist would be envious!
posted by Nematoda at 5:59 PM on April 14, 2008

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