If you have a cherry tree then you should definitely be aware of these flowering cherry tree diseases. Read on to find out common flowering cherry tree problems and their treatments.
During the season of spring, you look forward to seeing your cherry blossoms tree in full bloom.
Who doesn’t want to have a mass explosion of light pink flowers adorning their yard or garden, right?
However, all your excitement can go in vain if your ornamental cherry tree doesn’t bloom or have other growth problems.
Yeah, it will be heartbreaking and make you worried about it. Even I went through such an incident when my cherry blossom tree wasn’t producing flowers properly once.
A Complete Guide to Monitoring Your Cherry Blossom Tree
The below table shows you the management procedure for each season.
If nutrient insufficiency symptoms are present, test the soil for nutrient and pH levels. Sample the roots or root crown for Phytophthora root rot and nematodes if the plants are showing signs of deterioration.
Crowns should be pruned. Remove any dead, dying, diseased (especially canker branches) or competing limbs. Examine and excavate the root collar.
Use oil to keep scales, mites, and aphids away. On trees having a history of leaf spots, shoot blight or black knots; use a fungicide treatment to control them. Water once every two to three weeks.
Again, if your tree has a history of fungal diseases, apply fungicide. Based on soil test results, use fertilizers and soil treatments to adjust pH as needed.
Borers, scales, caterpillars, mites, and aphids should all be monitored and treated during this time.
Follow the same steps as mid-spring.
Monitor for any diseases and treat as per. Inspect irrigation and soil moisture levels to prevent root disease and moisture stress.
Examine the mulch levels and make any required adjustments. Remove any branches that have become twisted or blighted. Water the tree once or twice when the top two-inch of the soil is dry.
Follow the same steps as early summer.
Follow the same steps as early summer.
Monitor and treat for insects and diseases. Ensure the soil has enough moisture before winter arrives to avoid harm.
To limit the danger of illness and rodent harm, remove any mulch from stems. Apply a soil pesticide treatment to reduce pest problems the following year. Water once every two to three weeks.
Flowering cherry trees can be affected by diseases such as cherry blossom blight, cherry leaf spot, powdery mildew, black knot, brown rot, and verticillium wilt.
To prevent these diseases, it’s important to maintain the health of the tree through proper care, such as irrigation, fertilization, and pruning.
Prompt removal of diseased or dead branches, and cleaning up fallen leaves and fruit, can also reduce the spread of disease.
While fungicides can be used to manage disease, prevention and cultural practices are usually the most effective strategies.
If you are also having trouble, I can help you in this regard. Today, I will talk about flowering cherry tree problems, how to treat and prevent them, tips on caring for them, and more in detail.
Ornamental Cherry Tree Diseases, Symptoms, Causes, Treatments, & More
If your cherry blossom tree looks sick, you shouldn’t waste time and start to find the reason and solution. And fortunately, it’s not that hard to diagnose the problem.
The common cherry tree diseases have noticeable symptoms, and you can easily treat them.
To name a few flowering cherry tree problems are rot, spot, and knot. They may also get blight, powdery mildew, and canker.
I have gathered around all the reasons behind their diseases, how to identify them, and what you need to do to prevent them. The diseases I am gonna discuss can be seen in ornamental and/or cultivated cherry trees.
So, keep reading and closely see the pictures to find similarities that your tree has, and you will be able to protect your precious cherry blossom tree.
Flowering Cherry Tree Diseases With Pictures And Symptoms
Black knot is a fungal infection that is known for attacking members of the Prunus genus like cherry and plum trees. If you notice distinctive uneven black galls on the branches of your tree, then they are black knots.
Although this fungus takes time to establish itself, once it does, it effectively strangles or girdles new growth, and if left untreated, it can be devastating to your trees.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By Black Knot:
Almost every type of ornamental cherry tree can be attacked by a black knot.
Symptoms of Black Knot Disease:
This disease causes hard, black swellings or knots on the tree that can reach 1-6 inches. If you leave them untreated, then these knots will emerge in numerous locations around the tree and grow in size.
A velvety, olive-green fungal growth may also hide the knots. And if the knot overgrows, it could cause the diseased branch to bend. Also, infected twigs may stop growing leaves, wilt, or die completely.
Causes for Black Knot Disease:
Apiosporina morbosa is the fungus that causes the black knots in a tree.
During spring and summer, mature knots produce spores. Then these spores are carried to sensitive plants around by rain and wind.
These spores can infect and germinate other new plants at the ideal temperature and wet conditions in just six hours.
And by fall, you will find light brown swellings on the infected branches. In the following spring, the expanding knots develop the olive-green fungal growth.
The knots will become harder, rougher, and black as the year continues through summer and fall.
Treatment For Black Knot Disease:
If your tree gets infected by it, prune 3 to 4 inches below the knot during the season when your cherry blossom trees don’t flower.
First, disinfect all your pruning equipment. Then after pruning the twigs, burn or bury them. Otherwise, it might be able to infect nearby healthy trees.
Now, if your tree is severely infected, you should remove it totally.
I won’t suggest fungicides since the Wisconsin Horticulture Division of Extension also doesn’t recommend using them. It’s because this type of treatment is costly and likely to be ineffective.
But, when things are still in control, consider treating your tree with an organic fungicide when the green tissue is seen and before and after flowering.
Season of Infection:
This infection occurs from the month of April through June.
They ruin the beauty of ornamental cherry trees as well as limit the production of fruit.
In case you live in a region where the black knot is found, you have to be cautious while choosing cherry trees.
It would be best to select a variety resistant to this disease, such as North Japanese hill cherry, East Asian cherry, and Prunus maackii (commonly known as Manchurian cherry or Amur chokecherry).
Brown rot is another viral cherry tree disease. Brown Rot disease is a fungal disease that affects flowering cherry trees.
It typically causes infected flowers to turn brown and rot, eventually leading to the death of the flowers and sometimes the fruit.
The disease can also spread to the twigs and branches of the tree, causing dieback and cankers. Brown Rot disease is caused by the fungus Monilinia laxa and thrives in warm, humid conditions.
Infected flowers and plant debris should be removed and destroyed to prevent the disease from spreading.
Fungicides can also be used to control the disease, but prevention through good tree care and maintenance is the best course of action.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By Brown Rot:
One of the types of cherry trees susceptible to this disease is the kwanzan flowering cherry tree.
Symptoms of Brown Rot Disease:
The flowers and leaves of the tree turn brown and start to fall. On twigs, little cankers grow, and gum flows out.
Powdery masses of brown-gray spores may be seen on diseased fruits, flowers, or branches when the weather is damp.
Reasons for Brown Rot Disease in Cherry Trees:
Monilinia fructicola fungus causes this problem.
If diseased blossoms do not fall off, the virus might spread from the flower to a nearby branch. Twigs then develop cankers, which yield more disease spores.
Brown rot thrives in warm, moist environments, and infection can happen in as little as three hours. Insects may act as the medium to spread this disease.
How to treat brown rot disease?
It’s kinda difficult to treat brown rot once it has taken hold. You can begin by pruning the diseased branches and leaves with sanitized shearing tools. Then burn or bury these removals to prevent further spreading.
Pruning your cherry tree will also help thin it out, allowing for improved airflow. To treat severe infections, you may use a safe organic fungicide.
Season of Infection:
This fungus often attacks the flowering cherry tree when they are in bloom.
This infection will damage the flower, foliage, and twigs.
A clean growing environment with sufficient airflow and low moisture is the best prevention against brown rot.
One of the essential things for healthy cherry blossom tree growth is pruning.
So, keep pruning them regularly. Pick up and dispose of plant debris around the tree’s base. This will create an environment less prone to fungal spores.
Powdery mildew is one of the most common cherry tree diseases that damage both fruit and leaf.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By Powdery Mildew:
Powdery mildew mostly affects sweet and sour cherries. Types like the Yoshino cherry blossom tree also get affected by it.
Symptoms of Powdered Mildew:
You will notice light powdery-type spots on the cherry leaves. It is less likely to affect older leaves since they may be immune to it.
So, young leaves are more susceptible to it. And the infected leaves can twist, distort, or grow pale. You may also find white fungus on the stem end of the cherry.
What causes Powdered mildew disease?
It is caused by an obligate biotrophic fungus, Podosphaera clandestine.
During fall, tiny structures (chasmothecia) bearing ascospores lie latent in leaves where tree limbs come together. Then, in the rainfall season, these structures discharge the ascospores.
The wind carries out the ascospores to infect young leaves. And by fall, the fungus goes into its overwintering stage in the chasmothecia to reiterate the cycle next season.
Note that the disease thrives in humid conditions with temperatures between 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
How to treat powdered mildew disease in flowering cherry trees
You can treat this problem with a safe, commercial chemical like a fungicide. You may also opt for a non-chemical solution like a mixture of baking soda and dormant oil to spray on your trees bi-monthly.
Alternatively, a combination of water and apple cider vinegar is also very effective against powdery mildew.
Season of Infection:
This disease spreads during late spring and summer.
A healthy growing environment with good air circulation may help to avoid powdery mildew. So, don’t overcrowd cherry trees and maintain enough space while planting several plants.
Also, dispose of rotting plant waste and fallen leaves around their bottom. Lastly, make sure to not overwater them as cherry blossom trees don’t like sitting in a waterlogged place.
Cherry Leaf Spot
Cherry leaf spot disease, also known as cherry leaf scorch, is a fungal infection that affects cherry trees.
The disease is caused by the fungus Blumeriella jaapii, which overwinters in infected leaves on the ground and then spreads to new leaves in the spring.
Symptoms of cherry leaf spot disease include purple or brown spots on leaves, which can cause defoliation if the infection is severe.
The disease can also cause reduced fruit production and quality.
Cherry leaf spot disease can be managed through cultural practices, such as removing infected leaves and pruning trees to improve air circulation, as well as fungicide applications.
It’s important to monitor for symptoms and address the disease promptly to prevent its spread and minimize damage to cherry trees.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By Cherry leaf spot disease:
It attacks sweet, tart, and English Morello cherries.
Symptoms of Cherry Leaf Spot Disease in Cherry trees
This disease affects cherry tree leaves, with symptoms appearing on leaf petioles and fruit pedicels.
Tiny purple dots will appear on the upper surface of the leaf. These patches will grow to a diameter of about 1/4 inch and turn into a reddish-brown tint.
The centers of the spots might dry up and fall out after six to eight weeks, leaving little holes in the leaf. Before dropping off, older diseased leaves might turn golden yellow.
Cherry leaves infected with cherry leaf spots may drop too soon.
Causes of Cherry Leaf Spot Disease
Blumeriella jaapii fungus is the reason for coccomyces leaf spot disease. This fungus survives the winter on dead cherry leaves on the ground.
Apothecia (fruiting bodies) appear on the leaves in early spring and produce spores. These spores are distributed by rain to healthy leaves, germinating and penetrating the leaf.
Following infection, tiny purple spots emerge on the leaves. The undersides of these spots produce more spores (conidia), which show as whitish-pink underleaf lesions.
The conidia are then transferred by rain to other healthy cherry trees, causing further infestations.
How to treat Cherry leaf spot disease?
Start by removing as many infected leaves as possible from cherry trees affected with cherry leaf spots. Then, using an appropriate fungicide, spray your trees.
You can also use home remedies made with dish soap, baking soda, and water, which are beneficial in treating this problem.
Season of Infection:
Purple spots form on cherry leaves between the end of May and the beginning of June.
Healthy trees are less likely to get fungal diseases, so make sure you feed and water your cherry tree on a regular basis. In addition, regular fungicide spraying can help prevent active new spores from forming.
If your ornamental cherry tree is affected, the fruit will have poor taste. Also, dead fruit spurs, weak buds, loss of fruit, and possible tree death may occur.
All the cultivated types of the genus Prunus including cherries are susceptible to this virus.
Necrotic Ringspot is a plant disease caused by a soil-borne fungus named Ophiosphaerella korrae.
This disease mainly affects turfgrass, but it can also infect other plants, including clover and strawberry.
The symptoms of Necrotic Ringspot disease include circular or horseshoe-shaped rings of brown or yellow turfgrass with a healthy green center.
The grass within these rings may be stunted and have a thin appearance. The roots and crowns of the grass may also show signs of decay.
Necrotic Ringspot disease can be difficult to manage, but some preventative measures include avoiding excessive thatch buildup, minimizing soil compaction, and improving soil drainage.
Fungicides may also be used to manage the disease, although their effectiveness can vary.
If you suspect that your turfgrass or plants may be affected by Necrotic Ringspot disease, it’s best to consult a professional for diagnosis and treatment recommendations.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By It:
It affects sweet and sour cherries.
Symptoms of Necrotic Ringspot Disease:
Yellowing and browning of the leaves will show as symptoms. Leaves will establish holes which gives them a shothole outlook. On severely damaged plants, bark splitting and branch dieback occur.
In early summer, leaves may drop, and fruit may distort or mature later than usual.
By the way, this disease spreads relatively slower in sweet cherries than in sour ones. Enations also form on the underside of leaves, which gives them a thick and stiff look.
Causes of Necrotic Ringspot Disease
PNRSV (Prunus necrotic ringspot virus) is a plant pathogenic virus that causes ring spot illnesses in cherry blossom trees.
The virus spread through pollen, wood grafting, and seed. And then, the wind and pollinators spread the diseased pollen throughout the entire orchard.
How to treat Necrotic Ringspot Disease
Try treating this by pruning the damaged plant matter and applying fungicide. However, it may not always be effective. Therefore, it would be best if you remove the diseased trees to stop the spreading of this virus to others.
Season of Infection:
They usually get worse in late July or August, when there is a lot of summer stress.
Necrotic ringspot can harm your tree’s twigs, buds, and leaves, stunting its growth. PNRSV can cause sweet cherry fruit losses of up to 15%.
Necrotic ringspot can spread through pollen, seeds, wind, and wood grafting and is kinda difficult to eradicate. It’s best to choose disease-resistant varieties.
To avoid the virus getting out of hand, destroy any plants in your garden that may be infected.
One of the most destructive and common cherry blossom tree diseases is cytospora canker.
Cytospora canker is a fungal disease that affects a variety of trees, including spruce, pine, aspen, and willow.
The disease is caused by the fungus Cytospora spp., which infects the bark and cambium layer of the tree, leading to the formation of cankers.
Symptoms of Cytospora canker include sunken, discolored areas on the bark, usually near the base of the tree or on lower branches.
The cankers can eventually girdle the tree, leading to the dieback of branches and potentially the entire tree. In some cases, resin may also be present around the canker.
Cytospora canker is typically caused by stress factors that weaken the tree, such as drought, injury, or insect damage.
Management of the disease includes pruning infected branches and improving the tree’s overall health through proper irrigation, fertilization, and pest management. Fungicides may also be used in some cases.
It’s important to identify and manage Cytospora canker promptly to prevent the disease from spreading and causing further damage to trees.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By It:
It destroys sweet and sour cherries.
Symptoms of Cytospora Canker:
The tree branches will grow dark, depressed cankers, which wilt the branch. At the canker’s edge, an amber-colored gum may form.
The canker will ultimately encircle the limb and cause it to die.
What causes Cytospora Canker disease?
It is a fungal disease caused by Leucostoma kunzei.
On the canker, black pycnidia and spore-producing structures develop. These black pycnidia will eventually turn white.
Spore masses expel from the pycnidia under humid circumstances. Wind and rain carry the spores, which infect any bark wound.
Sunburn, ancient cankers, or wood-boring insects may have caused these lesions. One thing is that this disease is incapable of infecting healthy, undamaged bark.
If a cherry tree is stressed by drought, potassium deficiency, overcropping, or ringworms, its vulnerability to Cytospora canker rises.
How to treat Cytospora Canker?
Unfortunately, there is no chemical control that can treat cytospora canker. Removal is the most effective treatment for this illness.
Cytospora canker can be trimmed away, but be cautious about pruning far below the infection location. It can also be removed surgically by cutting cleanly into the bark at the canker margin and carefully removing infected tissue.
Season of Infection:
When the temperature rises above 90 degrees, cytospora canker grows. In the middle to late summer, cankers encircle dead limbs.
Well-formed cankers will destroy parts of your cherry tree.
Because there is currently no cure for Cytospora canker, the best way to avoid it is to keep cherry trees healthy and vibrant through careful maintenance.
Since the disease enters inside the plants through breaks and wounds, immature plants should be trained early to avoid branch breakage.
Also, you should prune established cherry trees regularly to prevent severe cuts.
Another fungal disease of flowering cherry trees is silver leaf.
Silver leaf disease is a fungal infection that affects a variety of trees, including cherry, plum, apricot, and peach trees.
The disease is caused by the fungus Chondrostereum purpureum and gets its name from the characteristic silver-gray discoloration that occurs on the leaves of infected trees.
Symptoms of silver leaf disease include wilting and yellowing of leaves, as well as the silver-gray discoloration on the leaves and bark of infected trees.
Infected branches may also have reduced growth and produce fewer leaves and fruit.
The disease is commonly spread through pruning wounds, so it’s important to properly sanitize pruning tools to prevent the spread of the fungus.
Infected branches should be removed promptly, and the tree’s overall health should be maintained through proper irrigation, fertilization, and pest management.
In some cases, fungicides may also be used to manage silver leaf disease. However, prevention is key to avoiding the spread of the disease and minimizing damage to trees.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By the Silver Leaf Disease:
It mostly attacks the species of the rose family Rosaceae like Okame, Kwanzan, Yoshino, and many more.
Symptoms of the Silver Leaf disease:
You will first notice a silver sheen, followed by dying branches. The exact number of affected leaves varies from tree to tree.
The metallic sheen is caused by the epidermis (surface layer) detaching from the rest of the leaf blade. This gap has an effect on light reflection.
Leaf symptoms may not arise year after year, and the silvery leaves may develop brown, dead spots.
These spots may or may not resurface the following year. But, don’t mistake a complete recovery for the absence of symptoms. A brown stain may flow underneath symptomatic leaves on branches.
When examined, a cut portion of dead branches might have dark-stained cores or bracket-shaped fungi.
What causes Silver Leaf disease?
The conks are generative structures of the disease-causing fungus. During the wet conditions in autumn, the fungus released from the conks spreads and infects trees with open wounds.
Then these fungi live in the water-conducting tissue of branches known as xylem. The dark stain that you will see is because of its presence in the xylem.
The toxin produced by the fungus travels to the leaves and gives the silvery sheen. As the wood decays, the illness develops, resulting in conks on the surface.
How to treat the Silver Leaf disease in cherry trees?
To treat silver leaf, begin by removing all affected areas from your tree. Avoid a revival by applying a suitable wound dressing to clipped branches.
Moreover, make sure that there are no infected trees around, and if present, prune those too.
Since the fungus limits water movement in branches, you have to provide enough water to diseased trees.
Season of Infection:
Cold and wet season.
The silver leaf will cause a slow deterioration in your blossoming cherry tree’s health.
It’s really important to prune your trees properly to avoid silver leaves.
Depending on the variety, prune them when they are done flowering. Always make sure that your shears are clean and sterilized to stop spreading the disease.
Crown rot is born from a fungal strain named Phytophthora.
Crown rot is a fungal disease that affects a wide range of plants, including vegetables, fruit trees, ornamentals, and field crops.
The disease is caused by various fungi, including Fusarium spp., Phytophthora spp., and Rhizoctonia spp., which can survive in soil for many years.
Symptoms of crown rot include wilting and yellowing of leaves, stunting of growth, and decay of the plant’s crown and root system.
The fungus attacks the plant’s vascular system, making it difficult for the plant to absorb water and nutrients. Infected plants are often stunted and may eventually die.
Crown rot is commonly spread through infected soil, so it’s important to avoid planting susceptible crops in areas where the disease has previously occurred.
Crop rotation and soil sterilization may also be effective in managing the disease.
In some cases, fungicides may also be used to manage crown rot.
However, prevention is key to avoiding the spread of the disease and minimizing damage to crops.
Maintaining healthy soil and using disease-resistant cultivars can also help to prevent crown rot.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By the Crown Rot disease:
Any type of cherry tree can be affected by it.
Symptoms of Crown Rot disease:
It’s an aggressive plant menace that attacks and destroys the roots of a flowering cherry tree.
Cherry trees with crown rot may appear to be in decline, but you’ll only know for sure if you investigate the roots of your tree.
Rot is more than likely the culprit if the tissue layer underneath your tree’s top bark is brown or orange rather than green.
What causes crown rot disease?
Excessive watering and damp soil are the most common causes of crown rot.
How to treat crown rot disease?
It is kinda disappointing that once the crown has set in, there is no way to get rid of it. It’s because detecting the disease is hard and is usually too late to stop once it’s identified.
You can try to save your plant by removing the soil around the crown and drying it out only if the damage is not too serious.
However, because this illness spreads quickly, it is recommended to kill infected plants.
How to prevent Crown Rot Disease?
Plant your cherry trees in well-draining soil and water them less frequently to prevent crown rot.
Treatment with fungicides can be helpful, but it is not always effective against this disease.
Another commonly found disease in an ornamental cherry tree is crown gall.
Crown gall is a bacterial disease that affects a variety of plants, including fruit trees, grapevines, and ornamentals.
The disease is caused by the bacterium Agrobacterium tumefaciens, which can enter the plant through wounds in the roots or lower stem.
Symptoms of crown gall include the formation of rough, wart-like growths on the stems, branches, and roots of infected plants.
These growths, called galls, can vary in size and shape and may eventually girdle the plant, causing wilting and dieback.
Crown gall can be spread through contaminated soil, infected plant debris, and contaminated pruning tools.
Management of the disease includes removing and destroying infected plants, avoiding injury to plants, and using disease-free planting material.
Prevention is key to avoiding the spread of crown gall, and planting disease-resistant cultivars and maintaining healthy soil can help to prevent the disease.
There are no effective chemical treatments for crown gall, so management strategies mainly focus on prevention and cultural practices to reduce the risk of infection.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By Crown Gall Disease:
Woody flowering cherry trees are mostly attacked by it.
Symptoms of Crown Gall disease:
It creates tumor cells that start from the roots and ultimately spread throughout the entire tree. These tumors are normally white, brown, or tanned.
What causes the Crown Gall disease?
It’s a bacterial disease that lives numerous years in the soil and often spreads from diseased nursery stock. Plants are infected through wounds, and after that, a tiny piece of DNA is transferred into the plant’s DNA that eventually causes the galls.
On young trees, a gall will establish as a soft, spongy, or water-like form on the crown or roots. And in mature trees, the size of the gall ranges from a fraction of an inch to several inches across.
Over time, the galls become hard with a rough, fissured surface. They have irregular growth, so they don’t have any definite growth pattern.
How to treat the Crown Gall disease
You’ll need to spray a chemical control sprayed across sick areas and infected branches to treat crown gall.
Although this method won’t cure it, it will stop it from spreading. Tumors can also be exposed and removed, which can help your cherry tree heal.
How to prevent Crown Gall disease?
Crown gall progresses in humid conditions and warm temperatures.
Therefore, keep your trees healthy by keeping their crowns dry and planting them in well-draining soil to avoid crown gall. Also, try to prevent hurting or breaking the plants.
Gummosis is the cherry plant’s reaction to stress.
Common Varieties That Are Affected By Gummosis:
This problem is usually seen in flowering cherry cultivars.
Gummosis disease is a plant disease characterized by the oozing of gum or sap from the bark or wounds of affected plants.
The disease can affect a wide range of plants, including fruit trees, ornamentals, and woody plants.
Gummosis can be caused by various factors, including bacterial and fungal infections, insect infestations, and environmental stress.
The gum or sap is produced by the plant as a response to the injury or infection.
Symptoms of gummosis include the oozing of gum or sap from the bark, cracks or sunken areas on the bark, and in severe cases, dieback of branches and the eventual death of the plant.
Management of gummosis involves identifying and addressing the underlying cause of the disease.
For example, infected branches should be pruned and destroyed, and insect infestations should be managed through appropriate pest control measures.
Improving the plant’s overall health through proper irrigation, fertilization, and cultural practices can also help to prevent the disease.
Prevention is key to avoiding the spread of gummosis, and maintaining healthy plants through proper care and management can help to prevent the disease.
Symptoms of Gummosis:
If you notice any gum seeping from your tree branches, buds, and trunks, it’s gummosis, which signifies that your tree is under some type of stress.
Don’t be surprised cause trees can be stressed too!
Gums will break through the surface and run down the bark.
What causes Gummosis disease?
Gumming is caused by several things, including winter injury, mechanical damage, insect damage, or improper growing methods.
In response to these injuries or stresses, a sticky amber oozes from lesions. Canker may become more obvious with time as branches expand or form corky growths on the margins.
Serious damage may result in wilting of leaves and, ultimately, the death of the wood.
Insects such as borers feast under the bark, creating wounds and tunnels on the inner bark. And that’s another reason for branches exuding gum through wounds.
How to treat Gummosis Disease?
Remove the darkened region of bark as well as a strip of good bark from the tree until a healthy bark margin surrounds the wound.
Once it’s done, let the area dry. You should keep checking the region and repeat the bark trimming if necessary.
How to prevent Gummosis disease?
Avoid mechanical injuries to your tree by pruning under dry weather conditions. Ensure the tree has a good growing site like well-drained soils and balanced fertilization to boost vigorous growth.
Moreover, practice sanitation by destroying cankered or rotting limbs.
Till now, I mostly talked about fungal and bacterial diseases. Apart from these, pests and insects trouble the tree a lot.
So, let’s gain some knowledge about them.
Problems Caused By Sap-Sucking Insects
Scales, aphids, and spider mites are some common sap-sucking insects that attack cherry blossom trees.
They eat the phloem sap running throughout the cherry tree, resulting in the leaves wilting, discoloring, and falling from the tree branches.
Generally, these pests are more annoying than a disease.
And when the infestation is large, or the tree’s health is in threat, only then the chemical control measures are necessary.
An effective and organic way of controlling these insects is plant-based insecticides such as neem oil. Mix 2 tablespoons of neem oil with one gallon of water and apply it thoroughly to the infested tree.
Repeat the treatment every 7 to 14 days if needed.
Problems Caused By Chewing And Boring Insects
Many flowering cherry trees are host to many chewing and boring insects like leaf-eating caterpillars, tent caterpillars, and borers.
Tent and leaf-eating caterpillars can be controlled by using the low-toxic bacterial insecticide Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). It controls the larval stage of insects and is safe to use.
It is applicable as a foliar spray utilizing a rate of 4 teaspoons for every gallon of water.
And during mid-May and mid-July, spray the trunk and limbs of the tree with carbaryl insecticide to control boring pests such as peach tree borers.
Before applying the trunk, it is recommended to dilute 1/3 fluid ounce of the chemical with a gallon of water.
By the way, plenty of problems observed on cherry trees aren’t even caused by disease or pests!
Yes. They are usually caused by nonliving factors or abiotic problems or disorders, including excessive rainfall, drought, low sunlight, weather extremes, compacted soil, applying too much fertilizer, planting the tree too deeply, and/or root damage from the tree cultivation around the root.
So, there is no alternative to taking care of your tree properly. I have already provided the prevention method for each type of problem.
Still, I am giving an overall season-to-season monitoring guide for you.
Hopefully, my write-up on flowering cherry tree problems will help you protect yours.
Don’t forget to monitor them regularly. Lastly, I hope your cherry tree keeps blooming every year and adorn your garden like a beautiful paradise.
Have a great time….
How do I keep my cherry tree healthy?
To keep your cherry tree healthy, here are some tips:
- Watering: Cherry trees need consistent moisture, especially during the growing season. Water deeply once a week, or more frequently in dry weather. Avoid overwatering, which can lead to root rot.
- Fertilization: Apply fertilizer in early spring before new growth appears. Use a balanced fertilizer or one that’s specific to fruit trees. Avoid over-fertilization, which can cause excessive vegetative growth and reduce fruit production.
- Pruning: Prune your cherry tree in late winter or early spring to remove dead or diseased wood, and thin out crowded or crossing branches. This will promote good air circulation and sunlight penetration, which can reduce the risk of disease.
- Pest management: Keep an eye out for pests such as aphids, mites, and scale insects. Use integrated pest management techniques, such as insecticidal soap or neem oil, to manage infestations.
- Disease prevention: As mentioned earlier, cherry trees can be susceptible to various diseases. Maintaining good sanitation practices, such as removing fallen leaves and fruit, can help reduce the risk of disease. Also, choose disease-resistant varieties when possible.
By following these tips, you can help keep your cherry tree healthy and productive for years to come.
Cherry Tree Disease: FAQs
What is the white fungus on my cherry blossom tree?
The white fungus on your cherry blossom tree is likely powdery mildew, a fungal disease that can affect the leaves, stems, and flowers of the tree.
Powdery mildew can be managed by removing and destroying infected plant material, improving air circulation, and applying a fungicide labeled for powdery mildew.
It’s recommended to consult with a local expert for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.
What is the black fungus on my cherry blossom tree?
The black fungus on your cherry blossom tree is likely black knot, a fungal disease that can cause dark, rough growths or swellings on the branches or twigs of the tree. To manage black knot, prune and destroy infected branches or twigs, and practice sanitation measures to reduce disease spread. Consulting with a local expert can provide a proper diagnosis and treatment plan specific to your tree’s situation.
What is the lifespan of a flowering cherry tree?
Most varieties of flowering cherry trees have a lifespan of 30 to 40 years. But, with proper maintenance, they can live longer.
How do you know when a cherry tree is dying?
Look for brittle, dry limbs and fragile, disintegrating tree wood. Even in the winter, dead cherry trees will rot from the inside out, and the wood will give a visible indicator that the tree is dead.