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College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences


Diagnose Woody Plant Pests and Diseases at Plant Diagnostic Academy

April 23, 2009

DAYTON, Ohio -- Diagnosing pest and disease problems of woody plants isn't always a simple matter, but an Ohio State University Extension program will be held in May that is designed to make the process a bit easier.


The Plant Diagnostic Academy, hosted by the Ohio Woodland Stewards Team and the OSU Extension, Nursery, Landscape and Turf Team (ENLTT), will be held May 19-21 at Cox Arboretum and Garden Metropark in Dayton, Ohio. The workshop offers intensive hands-on programming that helps to answer one simple question, "What's wrong with this plant?"

Registration is $250 and includes program materials, a plant diagnostic kit and meals. Deadline to register is May 12.

"The Plant Diagnostic Academy is designed to help attendees better understand the identification process and to develop the skills needed to diagnose plant health problems caused by insects and diseases," said Kathy Smith, an OSU Extension associate in forestry. "It's more than just throwing a chemical on a plant to treat something that you are just guessing what it is. The program focuses on an IPM (Integrated Pest Management) approach of correctly identifying the problem and treating it with the right insecticide or pesticide."

The Plant Diagnostic Academy will specifically focus on diagnostics of woody plants, and will include sessions on the process of plant diagnostics, hands-on diagnostic demonstrations, woody plant diseases, insect and mite problems and cultural and environmental challenges. Attendees will come away with key plant identification characteristics, resource materials to help with identification and diagnosis, the right questions to ask to identify a potential problem and the process for taking diagnostic images.

Plant Diagnostic Academy instructors include Dave Apsley, OSU Extension natural resource specialist; Joe Boggs, OSU Extension horticulturist; Jim Chatfield, OSU Extension horticulturist; Erik Draper, OSU Extension horticulturist; and Kathy Smith, OSU Extension forestry associate.

For more information or to register, log on to the Ohio Woodland Stewards Web site at or call (614) 688-3421 or e-mail


Candace Pollock
Kathy Smith