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USDA adds seven (7) Georgia counties to the Emerald Ash Borer Quarantine Area

On February 22, 2016 The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) added Barrow, Cherokee, Douglas, Fannin, Habersham, Murray, and White Counties in Georgia to the list of regulated areas for the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB). The Federal Quarantine specifically regulates the interstate movement of EAB-host wood and wood products from the quarantined areas in Georgia including firewood of all hardwood species, nursery stock, green lumber, waste, compost, and chips of ash species.


There are now 19 Georgia counties under the EAB Regulatory Quarantine. See The Georgia Forestry Commission or Georgia Department of Agriculture website for a map and list of the regulated Georgia counties and for information about EAB identification, damage symptoms, photographs, life cycle and quarantine regulations.


The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is a non-native and highly invasive insect that has killed tens of millions of ash trees in 25 states and in Canada since it was first discovered near Detroit, Michigan in 2002.  It is thought that EAB was accidently introduced into the U.S. from Southeast Asia in infested shipping containers and materials. EAB kills both vigorously growing and weakened ash trees.

The American Chestnut Foundation – Georgia Chapter Meeting

Meeting Description
The GA-TACF annual meeting is an exciting opporunity to learn more about American chestnut restoration research in Georgia and national restoration efforts! Attendees will hear research presentations from Georgia scientists as well as from nationally recognized plant geneticist William Powell, who leads ground-breaking transgenic work with blight-resistant chestnuts at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. Also, attendees will tour laboratory and horticultural facilities involved in chestnut research at the University of Georgia. It is free to attend the meeting, and box lunches will be available to attendeeds for $7.
Please let us know if you can attend by RSVP-ing on our Eventbrite page by March 26th! Also, if you plan to purchase a box lunch, please select your sandwich preference when you register!
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Meeting Schedule
Warnell School of Forestry
9:00 – 9:30 Arrive, sign in, coffee, pay for lunch
9:30 – 10:00 Convene & membership meeting, Mark Stoakes
10:00 – 10:10 Welcome address, Dean Green
10:10 – 10:30 Update on breeding program, Martin Cipollini
10:30 – 10:35 American chestnut remaining in the wild, Nathan Klaus
10:35 – 11:15 Keynote address & presentation, Bill Powell
11:15 – 12:30 Embryogenesis & clonal propagation presentation and lab tour, Scott Merkle
12:30 – 1:30 Lunch; depart for Watkinsville Horticultural Research Farm
Watkinsville Hort Research Farm
2:00 – ~3:30 Tour Hort Farm backcross orchard, Ryan McNeil
Meeting Location Map
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Have a question? Email us at
Saturday, April 9, 2016 from 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM (EDT) – Add to Calendar
Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia – 180 E. Green St.. Building 1, Room 304. Athens, GA 30602 – View Map

Changes to the Worker Protection Standard

by Joseph LaForest

I  thought that many of you may be interested in recent changes to the Worker protection Standard.  EPA put out a good comparison chart which is in the PDF.

  Here are what they list as the major revisions include

  • Annual mandatory training to inform farmworkers on the required protections afforded to them. Currently, training is only once every 5 years.
  • Expanded training includes instructions to reduce take-home exposure from pesticides on work clothing and other safety topics.
  • First-time ever minimum age requirement: Children under 18 are prohibited from handling pesticides.
  • Expanded mandatory posting of no-entry signs for the most hazardous pesticides. The signs prohibit entry into pesticide-treated fields until residues decline to a safe level.
  • New no-entry application-exclusion zones up to 100 feet surrounding pesticide application equipment will protect workers and others from exposure to pesticide overspray.
  • Requirement to provide more than one way for farmworkers and their representatives to gain access to pesticide application information and safety data sheets – centrally-posted, or by requesting records.
  • Mandatory record-keeping to improve states’ ability to follow up on pesticide violations and enforce compliance. Records of application-specific pesticide information, as well as farmworker training, must be kept for two years.
  • Anti-retaliation provisions are comparable to Department of Labor’s (DOL).
  • Changes in personal protective equipment will be consistent with DOL’s standards for ensuring respirators are effective, including fit test, medical evaluation and training.
  • Specific amounts of water to be used for routine washing, emergency eye flushing and other decontamination, including eye wash systems for handlers at pesticide mixing/loading sites.
  • Continue the exemption for farm owners and their immediate families with an expanded definition of immediate family.


Spraying Insecticide? There’s an App for That

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists have released two mobile phone applications, or “apps,” to make things easier for anyone who needs to adjust insecticide spray equipment.

The apps were developed by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists Bradley Fritzand Wesley “Clint” Hoffmann at the agency’s Areawide Pest Management Research Unit in College Station, Texas. The apps are designed to ensure that aerial and ground-based crews can hit targets and minimize pesticide drift by keying in specifics on the type of equipment and pesticide they are using.
ARS is USDA’s principal intramural scientific research agency, and the research supports the USDA goal of promoting agricultural sustainability.
With dozens of manufacturers producing dozens of different types of spray technology—each with its own nozzle type, flow rate, and pressure setting range—the equipment setup can get pretty complicated. Aerial sprayers also must factor in wind speed, air temperature, flight speed and humidity.
The apps incorporate the latest science of spray technology, including “spray nozzle atomization” models developed by ARS at College Station. They can be used with a smartphone and accessed right from a field or the cabin of a small aircraft. More than half of all aerial applicators responding to a survey by the National Agricultural Aviation Association reported using smartphones. Data also can be saved for later use and e-mailed to colleagues.
One app is designed for ground-based spraying for mosquitoes and other threats to public health. It covers 60 different sprayers made by 19 manufacturers and was developed jointly with the Department of Defense‘s Navy Entomology Center of Excellence in Jacksonville, Fla. The user selects the appropriate sprayer and is guided through the process of selecting specific operational settings, such as the nozzle type, flow rate and spray pressure setting.
The other app, for aerial spraying, walks users through the process of adjusting nozzles and settings so pesticides are delivered at optimal droplet sizes. Droplet size is critical in aerial operations to ensure “on-target deposition” and minimize pesticide drift. The user specifies the nozzle manufacturer from a menu and is steered through a series of screens and prompts that, based on the specific operating conditions, helps him or her select the right size of the nozzle opening, spray pressure, nozzle orientation and airspeed.

The apps are available online through the Apple iTunes App Store and the Google Play Android Marketplace by searching for “Aerial Sprays” for the aerial application app and “Vector Sprays” for the ground-based sprayer app.

Read more about this research in the November/December 2012 issue of Agricultural Research magazine.

IR-4 Survey for Horticulture

The 2012/2013 Grower and Extension Survey is now available online. This survey is critical in deciding the IR-4 research priorities for ornamental horticulture. It outlines the pest management needs and will be a main component of the 2013 Workshop discussions.
As you fill out the questionaire, focus your thoughts on disease, pest, and weed problems that are difficult to manage because there are not enough pest management options. 
Please feel free to forward this survey to other interested people.
Thanks for helping IR-4 help the green industry!

Restrictions on importation of Phytophthora ramorum (P. ramorum) host plants for planting into the United States

APHIS is issuing a Federal Order to restrict importation of plants for planting known to be hosts of P. ramorum. Since 2003, APHIS has been working toward limiting the spread of P. ramorum within the United States. APHIS has also been requiring that plants from several European countries and the United Kingdom be accompanied by certification of inspection and testing to be free of P. ramorum; however, the certification does not provide details about the country’s pest exclusion plan. Also, APHIS has not been requiring certification from other countries about testing or their disease-free status. The genotypic diversity and expanding host range of P. ramorum is of increasing concern.
Therefore, APHIS is requiring specific countries to have in place an annual pest exclusion program that incorporates monitoring, sampling, testing and a validation process to verify the absence of P. ramorum in a place of production. APHIS will approve the country to export host material to the United States if the program is comparable to APHIS’ restrictions for interstate movement of P. ramorum hosts. The shipments must also be accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration about the place of production. Plants for planting of P. ramorum host commodities from other countries will be allowed into the United States if accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate with an additional declaration stating that P. ramorum is not known to exist within the country.
The restrictions apply to host plants for planting and all plant parts intended for propagation except seed of the plant taxa. The current APHIS-regulated P. ramorum host plant list is available at:
For questions on this Federal Oder, contact:

William Aley, Sr. Import Specialist, APHIS Plant Protection and Quarantine, Riverdale, MD at (301) 851-2130 or

See the entire document here:

NOTE: This amends a previous federal order and its largest change is “APHIS is requiring specific countries to have in place an annual pest exclusion program that incorporates monitoring, sampling, testing and a validation process to verify the absence of P. ramorum in a place of production.” Previously, no such testing was required.

Agricultural Water Usage – Trends, Indicators, and What It All Means

Noel R. Gollehon, Senior Economist, Natural Resources Conservation Service, US Dept of Agriculture

This webinar analyzed the complexities of irrigation practices through data analysis and graphical representation of trends to educate, identify efficiencies and improvements, and provide an accurate representation of the irrigation “story.” Key take-aways included –

An analytical approach to agricultural irrigation that reveals the underlying drivers shaping current trends.

Improved irrigation methods from a farm and basin-wide perspective, resulting implications and unintended consequences.

Improved water management practices and application technologies with the potential for real change.

Additional information on myths regarding consumption versus use and return.

Accessing the archived webinar is pretty straightforward – and it is a free webinar that you can watch any time. Just click the link below.

BIG NEWS – 8 Species Added to P. ramorum Host List!!!


Domestic quarantine for Phytophthora ramorum 


January 25, 2012 

This Federal Order is issued pursuant to the regulatory authority provided by the Plant Protection Act of June 20, 2000, as amended, Section 412(a), 7 U.S.C. 7712(a), which authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to prohibit or restrict the movement in interstate commerce of any plant, plant part, or article, if the Secretary determines the prohibition or restriction is necessary to prevent the dissemination of a plant pest within the United States and is likewise issued pursuant to the regulations promulgated under the Plant Protection Act found at 7 CFR §301.92 et seq.

The Administrator of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) considers it necessary in order to prevent the spread and dissemination of P. ramorum, to add eight new plant species to the list of associated plant taxa. Additionally, the APHIS administrator has determined it is necessary to move one currently regulated species Cinnamomum camphora from the list of associated plant taxa to the list of proven host plant taxa. The movement of nursery stock of these plant taxa from the States of California, Oregon, and Washington will now be regulated in accordance with this Federal Order and the P. ramorum regulations located at 7 CFR §301.92. Nurseries in the regulated states containing these newly listed plants must operate under a compliance agreement.

The State Regulatory Agencies in the United States, Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), and the United Kingdom’s Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs, Food and Environment Research Agency (DEFRA /FERA) have identified additional plants associated with P. ramorum that were not previously recorded. Details on these detections are as follows:

Additions to Associated Plant Taxa: 

Ilex cornuta 

• Family: Aquifoliaceae

• Common names: Buford holly, Chinese holly, horned holly

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis

• Notes: Report from USA


Illicium parviflorum 

• Family: Schisandraceae

• Common names: Yellow anise

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis

• Notes: Report from USA


Larix kaempferi 

• Family: Pinaceae (Pine family)

• Common names: Japanese larch

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis, dieback and canker

• Notes: Report from United Kingdom, Ireland


Magnolia denudata 

• Family: Magnoliaceae (magnolia family)

• Common names: lily tree

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis

• Notes: Report from Canada, United Kingdom


Mahonia nervosa 

• Family: Berberidaceae (Mahonia)

• Common names: Creeping Oregon grape

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis

• Notes: Report from USA


Molinadendron sinaloense 

• Family: Hamamelidaceae

• Common names: nil

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis

• Notes: Report from USA


Trachelospermum jasminoides 

• Family: Apocynaceae (milkweed family)

• Common names: Star jasmine, Confederate jasmine

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis

• Notes: Report from USA


Veronica spicata Syn. Pseudolysimachion spicatum 

• Family: Scrophulariaceae

• Common names: Spiked speedwell

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis

• Notes: Report from USA


Moved to the Proven Host Plant Taxa from Associated Host Plant Taxa: 

Cinnamomum camphora 

• Family: Lauraceae

• Common names: Camphor tree

• Symptoms: leaf necrosis, canker

• Notes: Report from USA from Landscape in California


Effective March 1, 2012 any nurseries within the regulated and quarantined areas containing these newly listed associated plants must be properly inspected, sampled and tested in order to be able to move any plants interstate.

————- For more information contact your state Department of Agriculture or your State Nursery Inspector —————–

USDA Unveils New Plant Hardiness Zone Map

January 25, 2012
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today released the new version of its Plant Hardiness Zone Map (PHZM), updating a useful tool for gardners and researchers for the first time since 1990 with greater accuracy and detail. The new map—jointly developed by USDA’s Agricultural Research Service(ARS) and Oregon State University‘s (OSU) PRISM Climate Group—is available online ARS is the chief intramural scientific research agency of USDA.
For the first time, the new map offers a Geographic Information System (GIS)-based interactive format and is specifically designed to be Internet-friendly. The map website also incorporates a “find your zone by ZIP code” function. Static images of national, regional and state maps also have been included to ensure the map is readily accessible to those who lack broadband Internet access.
“This is the most sophisticated Plant Hardiness Zone Map yet for the United States,” said Catherine Woteki, USDA Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics. “The increases in accuracy and detail that this map represents will be extremely useful for gardeners and researchers.”
Plant hardiness zone designations represent the average annual extreme minimum temperatures at a given location during a particular time period. They do not reflect the coldest it has ever been or ever will be at a specific location, but simply the average lowest winter temperature for the location over a specified time. Low temperature during the winter is a crucial factor in the survival of plants at specific locations.
The new version of the map includes 13 zones, with the addition for the first time of zones 12 (50-60 degrees Fahrenheit) and 13 (60-70 degrees Fahrenheit). Each zone is a 10-degree Fahrenheit band, further divided into 5-degree Fahrenheit zones “A” and “B.”
To help develop the new map, USDA and OSU requested that horticultural and climatic experts review the zones in their geographic area, and trial versions of the new map were revised based on their expert input.
Compared to the 1990 version, zone boundaries in this edition of the map have shifted in many areas. The new map is generally one 5-degree Fahrenheit half-zone warmer than the previous map throughout much of the United States. This is mostly a result of using temperature data from a longer and more recent time period; the new map uses data measured at weather stations during the 30-year period 1976-2005. In contrast, the 1990 map was based on temperature data from only a 13-year period of 1974-1986.
However, some of the changes in the zones are a result of new, more sophisticated methods for mapping zones between weather stations. These include algorithms that considered for the first time such factors as changes in elevation, nearness to large bodies of water, and position on the terrain, such as valley bottoms and ridge tops. Also, the new map used temperature data from many more stations than did the 1990 map. These advances greatly improved the accuracy and detail of the map, especially in mountainous regions of the western United States. In some cases, they resulted in changes to cooler, rather than warmer, zones.
While about 80 million American gardeners, as well as those who grow and breed plants, are the largest users of the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map, many others need this hardiness zone information. For example, the USDA Risk Management Agency uses the USDA plant hardiness zone designations to set some crop insurance standards. Scientists use the plant hardiness zones as a data layer in many research models such as modeling the spread of exotic weeds and insects.