Fungal diseases can result in serious root and trunk decay in trees. Presence of decay weakens the strength of the wood and makes trees structurally unsound. Decay is a common cause of failure in trees in both normal and extreme weather conditions.

Unless there is a cavity in the tree or the bark has been injured, decay may go unnoticed. However, the presence of fruiting structures is a good sign that the tree has been infected with a fungal disease. These structures vary in color, size and appearance. Some have a typical mushroom shape while others are shelf- or bracket-like.

In some cases these fruiting bodies do not appear until years after the onset of the disease. With this in mind, the appearance of mushrooms or conks on or near trees should always be inspected promptly.

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