What's Killing my Cherry Tree

Discussion in 'Fruit and Nut Trees' started by Alanp, Jun 9, 2006.

  1. Alanp

    Alanp Member

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    Local Time:
    6:38 AM
    I have a Bing Cherry tree that has been there now for about 12 years or so. This spring it blossomed more beautifully than it has in any year in the past, and then the green cherries started to form in abundance. It looked like a great harvest was coming. But lately, something has started attacking the tree and I don't know what. I don't see any insects on the leaves, but the leaves and the fruit are definitely being killed. A couple of large branches in the front (the sunny side of the tree) are almost bare now. The back (shady side) still looks pretty healthy.

    I'm attaching some pictures to show what it looks like. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks

    Alan
     

    Attached Files:

  2. jimmyq

    jimmyq Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

    Messages:
    2,346
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Metro Vancouver, BC, Canada.
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
    hmm. pic # 2 suggest gummosis. pic #3 suggest aphid damage, pic #4 is a fungal leaf spot and #5 looks like a bit of caterpiller damge and some fungal leaf spot.
     
  3. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

    Messages:
    1,421
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
  4. Alanp

    Alanp Member

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    Local Time:
    6:38 AM
    Thanks to both of you for your replies. Mr. Shep, after having looked at the sites you posted, I have to agree that the tree has bacterial canker. This is a very unhappy situation. I really thought I was going to get the harvest of harvests this year, but .... I guess I'm going to have to get someone in who knows how to deal with this. At least, from what I read, this doesn't necessarily mean the end of the tree.

    Thanks again.
     
  5. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

    Messages:
    1,421
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
    There are ways to live with Bacterial Canker
    but it will require you to apply a Copper based
    fungicide on this tree every Spring. Cytospora
    Canker is far worse for the tree as it takes out
    whole young limbs pretty much all at one time.
    That is truly dreadful stuff to see happen to any
    Cherry.

    The Canker was in the tree all along as it more
    than likely came from the scion parent that the
    rootstock was grafted onto. You have no control
    over that but you can limit how far this disease
    spreads and the damage it will cause by using
    a good old white latex paint. Scrape off the
    amber colored gummosis as best as you can
    after the fruiting is over with. Cover over the
    areas where you see any of the amber colored
    gummosis, trunk, large branches, limbs with
    the white latex paint. This will help prevent a
    secondary invader from coming in such as a
    wood rotting fungus and even borers from
    coming in and hitting a weakened tree. As
    long as the Canker has not spread to all of
    the limbs you should be fine dealing with
    this disease for many years to come.

    The tree next door was far worse than your
    Cherry is now almost 30 years ago. We
    gave it a major surgery with a pruning,
    painted what was left of the tree allover
    with then an oil-based (linseed oil) white
    paint and made sure it got 2 Copper sulfate
    sprays each and every Spring and today it
    still bears fruit.

    Paint all of the trunk soon if you can.
    When the tree drops all of its leaves
    ask us how you should proceed with
    a pruning or hire a certified arborist
    to come in an evaluate your tree and
    do the work for you. Right now the
    painting of the trunk is what you need
    to do the most to help your tree. You
    can paint any of the other areas on the
    tree if need be when you have access
    to them

    A couple of large branches in the front
    (the sunny side of the tree) are almost
    bare now.


    Do you have any photos of those limbs
    as it may be another disease such as
    Eutypa dieback that might have caused
    that to happen?

    Jim
     
  6. Alanp

    Alanp Member

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    Local Time:
    6:38 AM
    Jim, Great information. Thanks. Just so I'm clear on this, I think what I'm getting is to paint the trunk now. When the fruiting is over (the fruit is all still green - some with spots), I then should scrape off the amber gummosis and paint those spots.

    I'll take some pictures of the bare branches tomorrow and post them in the evening.

    Again, thanks for taking the time on this.

    Alan
     
  7. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

    Messages:
    1,421
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
    If you are worried about contamination of the
    fruit still on the tree then hold off on the paint.
    I would want you to paint as much of the trunk
    as you can. Preferably the entire trunk, from the
    lowest branch on the tree all the way around
    and downward, not just the areas where the
    gummosis was after you scraped off as much
    as you can of it,. Even to the extent of covering
    over the graft union with a solid coat of paint.
    Perhaps two coats after the fruit has come off
    the tree. Any of the non-hardened off gummosis
    that stays on trunk and larger branches makes
    it tougher to get good coverage with the paint.
    What we want to do is force some containment
    of the disease topically and try to keep it from
    spreading throughout the tree if we can. We
    should be able to but we need to know how far
    along the disease is. We may not know that
    until the leaves have fallen off the tree so we
    can see where much of the disease is in this
    tree. It is what I cannot see so far that has me
    a little more concerned at the moment.

    If you can please post a photo of the entire tree
    as I want to get an idea of the size and shape
    of this tree.

    Jim
     
  8. Alanp

    Alanp Member

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    Local Time:
    6:38 AM
    Jim, thanks for the reply. Here are some pictures. One of the whole tree (more or less). It seems like a weird perspective, but hopefully it will give you some idea. You can see part the first story of my house on the left.

    The other pictures are of the bare branches you asked for. I didn't take any real closeups because I don't know what is of interest or not. One of the pictures is another picture showing fissures in the trunk.

    Again, thanks.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. jimweed

    jimweed Active Member

    Messages:
    364
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Aldergrove
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
    I was wondering, since bacterial blight causes blockage in the trees arterial system, can that force gummosis? Or is that caused only by bacterial canker? Just that it looks like that tree has had a serious infection of bacterial blight for many years. Jim.
     
  10. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

    Messages:
    1,421
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
    Very observant, yes, this tree has had some signs of Bacterial Canker
    for a long while which is why I was hoping to see the damage to the
    other side of the trunk. The gummosis exudes outward through small
    slits in the bark. I would have passed along this link below earlier but
    the photos did not correspond well to the damage seen on the tree but
    now the link will provide a better look at what it is going on in the wood
    underneath the bark. Blossom Blight to me is something altogether
    different but we can see visual proof how the blast has caused the
    limbs to become blighted.

    Cherry Bacterial Canker

    As a notation: The fumigants listed are not warranted for established
    trees with the Bacterial Canker disease. Methyl bromide can come
    in handy for non infectious bud failure also known as Crazy Top in
    Almonds and Cherries and as a pre-plant fumigant for known Armillaria
    root rot and nematodes that exist in the soil but this tree does not show
    signs of having them yet. The fumigants are used for seedlings grown in
    the ground prior to them being grafted. We have systemic fungicides that
    will provide better protection along with cultural suppressing of the disease
    but we have to remind ourselves there is no cure for the Bacterial Canker.
    We just make amends for us to better live with the disease and try to
    cut down on the affects this disease has on the tree. Treated early enough
    this tree will probably not die due to this disease but if borers come in or
    we get Eutypa dieback or worse yet Cytopsora Canker, then the end will
    be near for us. It is the secondary invader that can and usually does hurt
    us more than the primary disease does.

    A second note: If it were my tree I'd use a systemic fungicide at some
    point in time but I've seen enough posts in other threads to know that how
    we do things here from the production and home gardener end is looked
    down upon in other areas that choose to risk losing someone else's tree
    rather than offer a meaningful means to try to take care of it. In the case
    of the recommended controls for Ontario in one of the previous links, the
    use of topically, dormant and popcorn stage applied Copper sulfate sprays
    will probably be best for this tree grown in that home area.

    Jim
     
  11. Alanp

    Alanp Member

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    Local Time:
    6:38 AM
    Well, I guess I'll be out painting the trunk this coming weekend. The only thing that worries me is that I just know the neighbours are going to be watching and whispering, "It's the crazy guy with the cats. He's acting weird again. Get the kids inside!"
     
  12. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years of Activity

    Messages:
    1,421
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
    You will still want a certified arbortist to come in very
    soon after harvest and take out the dead branches.
    The painting of the trunk may seem unconventional
    in some areas but it is a well used practice here,
    mostly for production Fruit & Nut trees. What is
    a better borer preventer than a good solid painting?
    Far better than using a Lindane or a Kelthane spray
    after the fact when some borers are already in the
    tree. Cultural control and tree maintenance along
    with well timed fungicide sprays are still the best
    means for dealing with Cherries.

    The latex are and the old oil-based white paints were
    one of the most effective tools we have in Integrated
    Pest Management. When we see a 20-100 acre
    Apple orchard get hit one year with Pneumallaria
    (spelling?) Canker, see several of the trees die out
    the next year and then realize those trees would
    still be alive today if they had only been painted
    three years previous, we then can better realize
    just how important a tool the painting of the trunk
    and branches can be for us.

    Jim
     
  13. Alanp

    Alanp Member

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    Local Time:
    6:38 AM
    Thanks for all the help, Jim. Yes, I'll call an arborist pretty soon, but the painting will happen this weekend. I really don't want to lose this tree.

    Alan
     
  14. Pembyvalley

    Pembyvalley Member

    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Pemberton
    Local Time:
    3:38 AM
    Please have a look at the attached pictures of my three year old cherry tree.
    Am I also dealing with bacterial Canker?
    I would appreciate any kind of advice.

    (Sorry-I've trying to download the pics but can not seem to figure out how to attach the small pix.
    I have to do some more reading about it and will try again later)

    The trunk of my tree is ozzing gold color sap and two of the lower branches are dying fruit leaves and all... I am worried that my tree will die.
     

Share This Page