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Alternative to bleach for sterilizing

Discussion in 'Plant Health' started by Yellowdog, Jul 4, 2018.

  1. Yellowdog

    Yellowdog ArboristSite Operative

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    I'm looking for an alternative to bleach for sterilizing my saws and tools after working with oak wilt (Ceratocystis fagacearum).

    The last class I took, the forester said he would no longer use bleach after damaging his chainsaws. He stated the heat and petroleum products on a chain aren't good for the fungus but I would still like to sterilize my saws between trees especially when using a pole saw that just has a blade. I have looked at industrial strength Lysol and products like Barbisol that have been used for years on fungi.

    Anyone have a solution? TIA
     
  2. cuinrearview

    cuinrearview Addicted to ArboristSite

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    There are some oxygen based sanitizers used in the brewing industry, where bacterial or fungal contamination is a huge problem. When I brewed at home I used a product called sani-clean in a spray bottle, but there are more powerful products out there.
     
  3. jomoco

    jomoco Tree Freak

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    I keep waiting for a tool manufacturing outfit to design loppers with detachable handles so the steel cutting blades can be heat sterilized, in a minute or two.

    Are you listening Corona?

    Jomoco
     
  4. Leeroy

    Leeroy ArboristSite Operative

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    Listerine? Originally used to sterilize surgical instruments.
     
  5. Jason Douglas

    Jason Douglas ArboristSite Guru

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  6. no tree to big

    no tree to big Addicted to ArboristSite

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    We have used lysol. What about alcohol?

    Sent from my SM-G930T using Tapatalk
     
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  7. ATH

    ATH Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I think I was on vacation or trying to catch up after having been on vacation when this started, so misted the party the first time around...

    A) There is not a lot of evidence that I have seen that suggests surgical sterilization is beneficial or necessary. I've seen comments from a top oak wilt researcher that it is of no benefit in preventing spread of that pathogen if you are pruning at the right time of year. I know I've seen similar comments about winter pruning for fire blight. I think verticillium might be one where it is beneficial?

    B) Having said that, I still think at least cleaning tools is a simple prudence.

    C) Rubbing alcohol, Lysol, bleach, etc... are all good. Simple Green isn't a sterilizer, but it does a great job cleaning. If you are aiming for truly sterilized tools, none of those alone will do it. It needs to be cleaned of all debris first, then cleaned (or really soaked long enough that if there are any spores, etc, left in the wood chips that they are killed)
     
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  8. Jed1124

    Jed1124 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I think the pathogen makes a big difference in whether or no to sterilize. Flaggig DED, sterilize, fireblight, sterilize, Black knot, sterilize. Oak wilt in a prone area, wait till dormant.
    That being said I've heard of a lot of guys treating pruning cuts in Oak wilt areas with lack balsalm. As the world turns.....
     

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