Through September 2024 cost share funds are available for the removal and testing of trees infected with X-disease and Little cherry disease to slow the spread of these devastating pathogens. Funding is available through a grant from the Washington State Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant to Washington State University. The goal of this program is to provide cost share stipends for the removal and testing of trees infected with X-disease and Little cherry disease to slow the spread of these devastating pathogens. Trees must be removed and applications submitted by Sept 15, 2024 for reimbursement before the Sept 29, 2024 end of the grant.
75% tree removal cost share. Eligible cherry, peach, nectarine, plum and other stone fruit orchards must have suffered a tree loss due to confirmed X-disease phytoplasma or Little cherry virus. Reimbursement levels are up to 75% cost share for up to twenty acres (up to $20,000 per applicant). Funding is limited to a total of $225,000 disbursed over three years with no disbursements once funds are expended or past the grant final date. Note cost share was increased in 2024 due to fund availability.
Free testing. Up to 10 free LCV2+XDP tests per orchard entity are available in 2024 for the first 30 farms who apply (or until funds are expended). Up to 15 free LCV2+XDP tests per nursery entity are available in 2024 through the WSU Pullman Lab (cooperation with WSDA evaluation of mother trees).
Tree Removal for X-disease and Little Cherry Disease Cost Share Application Details
Download Tree Removal Cost Share Application (2024)
Background X-disease and Little Cherry Disease cause small, pale, bland, unmarketable fruit in cherries. In peaches, plums, and nectarines X-disease symptoms are typically yellowed curled leaves and shot hole as well as small-deformed fruit. These are long-term, debilitating diseases for infected trees. Infected trees must be removed to stop the spread of the pathogen. There is no cure. The economic impacts of tree removal are long lasting to growers during the seven-year re-establishment period costing growers an average of $118,095 in establishment and lost revenue per acre. X-disease phytoplasma and Little Cherry Virus 2 are spread by grafting and insect vectors. Leafhoppers disperse and forage over a wide area with a spread observed for 5-10 miles from infected orchards. It is critical to remove infected trees to stop spread to neighboring blocks.
The goal of this program is to provide cost share stipends for the removal and testing of trees infected with X-disease and Little cherry disease to slow the spread of these devastating pathogens.
Funding Source and Availability: Funding is available through a grant from the Washington State Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grants to Washington State University Extension.
- Eligible cherry, peach, plum, nectarine or other stone fruit orchards have suffered a tree loss due to confirmed X-disease phytoplasma or Little cherry virus.
- The affected orchard is within 10 miles of other orchards owned by another legal entity.
- Greater than 20 trees were removed (do not have to be continuous, may be scattered).
- Costs were incurred after 9/30/2021 (the grant start date).
- Trees must be removed and applications must be submitted by Sept 15, 2024. Applications must be finalized before the Sept 29, 2024 end of the grant.
Required application documents:
- Documentation of presence of confirmed infection by X-disease phytoplasma, Little cherry virus 2, or Little cherry virus 1 via lab results (positive test results from one or more trees from labs participating in the WSU proficiency testing program http://treefruit.wsu.edu/labs-lchv2-xdp/ or from Washington State University). Results must be from the 5 years previous to removal.
- Documentation of distribution in the block for whole block removal. Acceptable documentation include: photographs of symptoms from multiple trees, verification letter by qualified field staff, WSU Extension, or pest board representative (example Appendix 2).
Required documentation for tree removal funds:
- Records of tree removal expenses (e.g. invoice from excavator, labor receipts, laboratory test cost receipts). On-farm labor associated with removal can be charged up to $22/hr. Funds are available on a reimbursement basis for cost share of incurred expenses.
- Documentation of tree removal. Acceptable documentation include: photographs of block/trees after tree removal or verification form filled out by qualified field staff or WSU Extension (see Appendix 1).
Required documentation for testing cost share funds:
- Invoices from Little cherry/ X-disease testing.
- 75% cost share for up to twenty acres per applicant for tree removal, and 75% cost share on testing that leads to tree removal (up to 10 tests per block), up to $20,000 per application (grower/entity). Note cost share was increased in 2024 due to fund availability.
- 10 free LCV2+XDP tests per entity. By reimbursement or direct payment. For direct payment invoices should be for only one grower/entity with up to 10 samples (XDP, LCV2 only) from labs which have participated in proficiency testing (https://treefruit.wsu.edu/labs-lchv2-xdp/) . Contact Tianna (509) 713-5346 to confirm logistics.
Return forms to Tianna DuPont, WSU Extension (509) 713-5346 firstname.lastname@example.org
Complete applications will be rated and recommended for reimbursement on a quarterly basis as long as funds are available.
2024 quarter 1: Jan 1 to Mar 31, 2024
2024 quarter 2: April 1 to June 30, 2024
2024 quarter 3: July 1 to Sept 15, 2024
Applications and scoring matrix were developed by the X-disease and Little Cherry disease tree removal grant committee in 2020. Revisions to procedures were made in 2024 due funding availability to ensure funds were disbursed before the end of the grant period and to streamline applications. Procedures Tree Removal Cost Share 2024 (revised)