When it comes to plants and shrubs, especially fruit trees and landscape quality cultivars, disease can frequently be attributed to fungus. Some of the more common fungal diseases includes root rot, cankers, black knot, anthracnose, cedar-apple rust, apple scab and various blights. Various conditions favor disease development; warm, damp weather can be very conducive to tree fruit diseases, certain times of year and at certain stages of growth plants will be more susceptible to disease, monocultural growth may spread disease and conversely certain species planted near each other will provide host material in multi-stage fungal growth.
Disease can manifest as defoliation, fruit malformation, reduction in bloom, galls, leaf spot, canker formation on trunk or branches and even limb die off.
Fight the Blight
Prevention is the key when managing for tree diseases, healthy trees will have the most resistance. Carefully select sites for planting trees, monitor watering schedules; make sure trees are sufficiently watered during times of drought, but avoid over-watering and excessive mulching, regular fertilizations give will give an added healthful boost and adequate pruning will be beneficial. Your landscape may require cultural practices be integrated with biological and/or chemical controls for the best outcomes. Consult with your arborist to evaluate your property for disease and devise the optimal program for prevention, treatment and control.