Cool, wet conditions are the perfect weather for fungal growth. This is exactly the type of weather the Chicago area experienced this spring and early summer. There are many types of fungi that infect trees. One type is Anthracnose, which is commonly found on Maple, Ash, Oak, Sycamore and Walnut trees. But Dogwood, Catalpa, Linden and other tree varieties may also become infected. Anthracnose spores spread from tree to tree by wind, rain or mechanical means. This is also how the fungus spores move throughout an individual tree.
Small, dark brown or black spots on the leaves, blotches along the leaf veins, distorted leaf growth and early leaf drop are all symptoms of Anthracnose. Because the tree can lose so many leaves, it may seem like the tree is dying. But these symptoms typically do not kill the tree. There are steps that can be taken to lessen the chances of re-infection the following year and to prevent the disease from spreading further throughout the tree.
- Remove and destroy fallen leaves. The disease will spread to new, uninfected growth if the fungus is still in the area.
- Remove dead and diseased tree branches and limbs.
- Promote healthy tree growth by fertilizing and properly watering the tree during drought periods.
- Fungicide sprays are available to control Anthracnose symptoms. These are applied in spring, when new leaf growth begins emerging.
Kramer Tree Specialists offers a variety of professional services that protect your tree from Anthracnose. Pruning, BioGreen fertilization and Anthracnose spray programs are all options available from KTS. Call us today to have a Certified Arborist properly evaluate and diagnose your tree.