I Want To

Go To Search
Oak Wilt Suppression Trenching
Rock saw
Large-scale spread of oak wilt is controlled by cutting trenches around an entire oak wilt center, severing the roots and stopping root transmission. Oak wilt can "break out" and spread to trees outside if the trench was installed too close to infected oaks or if it was not deep enough to sever all the roots. Most trenches are cut to a depth of four or five feet with a rock saw, backhoe and manual labor.

Trench installation: cut and backfill
trench installation
"Trenching" is a misnomer because the oak wilt suppression trenches are filled in immediately after the roots are cut. The material that comes out is compacted back into the trench and the landscape is restored.

Trench 100+ feet beyond infected oaks
The Texas Forest Service recommends installing trenches a minimum of 100 feet beyond symptomatic oaks. When a trench is installed too close to infected trees, oak wilt often appears outside the trench within weeks. Oaks that appear healthy may be in the earliest stages of infection, so there should always be a group of non-symptomatic oaks between infected oaks and the trench line. Trenches should be placed beyond properties where all oaks have been treated with fungicide.

Trenching in urban neighborhoods
Trenches made with a backhoe
Cutting a four-to five-foot deep trench in urban areas and residential neighborhoods is mighty tough work. An eight-foot wide, 24-foot long rock saw is difficult to maneuver in tight spots. A backhoe, pick, shovel and lots of muscle are used to dig the trench to a four-foot minimum depth where the rock saw won't fit. Care must be taken to avoid cutting utility lines. In areas where limestone is close to the surface, it must be jackhammered out with a hoe ram attached to the backhoe.

Legal Disclaimer
Acknowledgement of business entities on this page or any other location throughout the City's official website does not constitute the City's support or endorsement of any organization, product or service.

This is the official City of Lakeway website in Lakeway, Texas. City of Lakeway, TX - Official Website. Here is the site's home page: Information about the City of Lakeway and community including city departments, City Council, parks, and police. Also includes city history.