Just was wondering if anyone ever uses elm, that has been infected
with the Dutch elm disease For salad bowls or other items, there is
always elm's dieing in this area and it could be a good supply of wood
I've been turning quite a bit of it lately, I have a good supply also.
It's a beautiful wood, and nice to turn.
I was concerned about issues regarding the disease, and asked a
woodturning buddy who forwarded my query to a state forester. His reply
is below. Doesn't seem to be reason for concern regarding end use of the
wood, just for preventing the spread of DED to other elm trees in the field.
Re: Question about Dutch Elm Disease
from Stephen Wiley
The pathogen is a vascular wilting pathogen. Which means it will be in
the water conducting tissues of the wood. Usually in the sapwood,
current years growth and cambium. However, it can be carried into the
xlyem from the roots.
It is commonly spread by two different elm beetles which bores through
the bark and either digests or carries the spores to an uninfected plant.
Most sanitation measures are by eradication of all the wood / bark
either by burning or burying.
The immediate removal of the bark and burning of the bark is the first
important step in reducing beetle activity and reduction of optimum
growing conditions for spores.
Probably your freinds interest in the wood is due to the brown staining
of the vascular tissues by the disease. This is where the spores are
Most information about the disease eradication or sanitation is geared
towards the prevention of beetle breeding or feeding .
I would think that the concern your friend would have here is being
prudent in not causing further spread. If the wood was void of bark,
dried for a couple of years, processed under controlled conditions, then
sealed with a varnish. He may be able to get a few pieces without
causing further spread.
Hopefully my answer has not confused you. To simplify, yes the fungal
spores may be in the vascular tissues of the wood depending upon the age
of the wood. But will only cause a problem if allowed to come into
contact with a carrier.
May want to check with your state agriculture, department of resources
or forestry offices for any regulations governing the handling of
infected wood. May be able to do the work during the winter months to
I think Elm is one of the treasures of North America an dis such a shame
that it is going extinct. If you have the supply do not waste it! Elm does
not split like most ofhter woods - if you are going to try and split it
withan axe and maul, it will take forever!
The wood grain is really cool too as it forms zig/zags between the growth
rrings and when cut properly the zig/zags are quite vivid.
"Ray Sandusky" wrote in message
Wish I'd been turning when we took down the 70' Siberian elm in the front
yard some years back. Some of the crotches were huge, and when split the
wood was beautiful and colorful. The root sections were amazing. It made
several cords of firewood and almost wore out a logsplitter.
Fortunately, there are a number of resistant strains available and
prospering. Plus, as epidemiologists remind us, it's proximity that
perpetuates, solitude stops.
To quote the governor - "I'll be back...."