Hickory Trees: Pests & Diseases Commonly Found In Vermont

As a Vermont resident, it's important to know which pests and diseases might threaten the trees in your backyard. Hickory trees, in particular, are a common sight in Vermont, with species such as shagbark hickory and pignut hickory being native to the region.

While hickory trees are generally hardy and resistant to many pests and diseases, there are a few issues that you should be aware of if you have hickories on your property.

Bark Beetle

Hickory Trees: Pests & Diseases Commonly Found In Vermont

One of the most common pests affecting hickory trees in Vermont is the hickory bark beetle. These small, brown beetles are attracted to trees that are stressed or weakened due to age, drought, or other factors. They burrow into the bark of the tree and create tunnels, which can girdle the tree and kill it if the infestation is severe.

To prevent hickory bark beetles, it's important to keep your hickory trees healthy and well-watered, and to remove any dead or dying branches as soon as possible.

[Related Article: Get to Know The 4 Types Of Hickory Trees Found In Vermont]


Another pest to watch out for is the hickory shuckworm. These green or brown caterpillars feed on the foliage of hickory trees, causing defoliation and weakening the tree.

While they can be controlled with insecticides, the best way to prevent hickory shuckworms is to maintain the health of your trees and remove any infested leaves as soon as possible.


Hickory trees are also susceptible to several diseases, including hickory wilt, hickory bark fungus, and hickory leaf blotch. Hickory wilt is caused by a fungus that infects the tree's vascular system, causing wilting and death.

There is no cure for hickory wilt, and infected trees should be removed to prevent the spread of the disease.

Hickory bark fungus causes dark, sunken lesions on the bark of the tree, which can lead to decay and death. This disease can be prevented by keeping your hickory trees healthy and pruning away any infected branches.

Hickory leaf blotch is a fungal disease that causes yellow or brown spots on the leaves of hickory trees. It is generally not fatal, but it can weaken the tree and make it more susceptible to other diseases.


While hickory trees are generally resistant to pests and diseases, it's important to be aware of the potential issues that can arise. By keeping your hickory trees healthy and vigilant for signs of infestation or disease, you can protect these valuable trees and ensure that they continue to thrive in your Vermont backyard.

Wyatt Keith

Wyatt is a hickory tree expert with 25 years of experience studying and working with these majestic trees. Wyatt has worked on various research projects and has conducted extensive field work, studying the growth and behavior of hickory trees in different regions of the country. In addition to his research, he has also worked with landowners and land managers to help them properly care for and manage their hickory trees. Wyatt is passionate about sharing his knowledge and expertise with others, and he frequently gives talks and presentations on hickory trees to various audiences.

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