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Dutch Elm Disease

Scientific Name

Ophiostoma ulmi (Buisman) Nannf. and Ophiostoma novo-ulmi Brasier (ITIS)

Common Name

Dutch elm disease (DED)

Native To

Unknown, possibly Asia (Brasier et al. 2001)

Date of U.S. Introduction

First discovered in the U.S. during the 1930s (Olson et al.)

Means of Introduction

Introduced accidentally on diseased logs imported from Europe (Flores 2006)


Lethal fungal disease of elm trees (particularly American elms (Ulmus americana), which are more susceptible to the disease than other elm species) (Olson et al.)

Current U.S. Distribution

Has been found throughout the entire U.S. except for the desert Southwest

Dutch elm disease -

Dutch elm disease symptoms


Roland J. Stipes Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Find more images


  • After a Blight, the Trees that Survived Need Your Help

    • Feb 25, 2020
    • USDA. Blog.

    • Humans adores trees. But humans also migrate and trade, habits that led to the accidental introduction of insects and diseases that harm trees and alter the landscape. Examples are easy to find and may be outside your front door: American elms that once dotted streets across America succumbed to Dutch elm disease. Now all colors of ash species – black, green, white, pumpkin, and blue – are threatened by emerald ash borer. The already uncommon butternut tree, also known as white walnut, faces the possibility of extinction from a mysterious attacker. Many invasive insects and fungi come from regions where native trees have evolved to resist their attacks. When these species enter the United States, they find trees that lack this resistance. There's no immediate end to this dismal pipeline, but there is hope on the horizon.

Distribution / Maps / Survey Status

  • Alien Forest Pest Explorer (AFPE)

    • USDA. FS. Northern Research Station.

    • The Alien Forest Pest Explorer (AFPE) is an interactive web tool which provides detailed spatial data describing pest distributions and host inventory estimates for damaging, non-indigenous forest insect and disease pathogens currently established in the U.S. Provides static maps displaying pest distributions (state and county) and a new interactive mapping tool (beta).


Selected Resources

The section below contains highly relevant resources for this species, organized by source.

Council or Task Force
Federal Government
International Government
State and Local Government