Jumping Oak Gall is jumping all over St. Louis!
Jumping Oak Gall is jumping all over the St. Louis Region – we are seeing it everywhere! The Jumping Oak Gall season begins in late spring when many of the upper leaves in White Oak trees began to turn brown. A close look at these leaves reveals tiny bumps, or galls, on the under surface of the leaves.
These galls are caused by extremely small parasitic wasps that, like the horned oak gall, inserts a wasp egg into the leaves with its causing each distorted growth. Hundreds of galls can form on every leaf and when higher numbers persist can destroy the leaves. The galls fall off to the ground by early summer. Many times the galls jump around as the larva squirms around inside the gall, like the Mexican Jumping Bean, helping it to work its way deeper under the leaf litter.
If the tree has lost much of its foliage going into the summer it can be further weakened as in invests into producing additional leaves. Like many other galls there are no immediate cures for the Jumping Oak Gall. The best strategy is stress management (Sanitation, Watering, & Fertilization). Give us a call if you would like us to come check it out!
Check out the Missouri Botanical Garden page on Jumping Oak Gall for more info, or the MSU Extension page
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