Decay Processes  - The DISCOLORATION PROCESSES begin immediately after wounding when the tree reacts-both by chemical reaction and by plugging.  When the pioneer microorganisms invade, the discoloration processes may intensify.  The DECAY PROCESSES begin when microorganisms begin to digest cell walls.  Many factors affect the rate of the discoloration and decay processes- severity of the wound, position, size, time of year of wounding, wounding agents that import materials into the wound, and the types of microorganisms that infect.

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