Are Your Trees Barking At You? 3 Tree Diseases You Should Know About

Did you know there are more than 20 well-known tree diseases that are responsible to the poor health and death of a number of tree species in the United States? While it might be hard for you to remember every tree disease in the United States, you can remember these three just by remembering the acronym BAR.

B is for Bacterial Wetwood

Slime flux, which is a slimy liquid ooze, seeps out of the cracks and wounds of many mature trees including oak, elms, maple, and tulip polar. You can tell the tree is leaking slime flux because it will have what appears to be black or dark brown streaks. It is believed that the slime flux leaks when the tree has a bacterial infection inside of its inner sap.

A is for Aspen Canker

The one huge disadvantage to having Aspen trees is how soft the bark is. The soft bark is easily wounded by animals, insects, and environmental factors. In parts of the Rocky Mountains, for example, elk feed on the bark of Aspen trees enough that it causes them to deteriorate rapidly. Canker diseases, however, are the most serious disease to this particular species of tree. Exactly how the tree is affected varies from one canker disease to the next. However, they all result in the growth of decay fungi which eats away at the tree bark and causes the tree to decay.

R is for Root Rot

There are a few kinds of root rot including Armillaria, Phymatotrichum, and Phytophthora. You may know these types of root rot by the names Texas root rot, cotton root rot, oak root rot, or mushroom root rot.

Symptoms of this disease include a dulling of the usual color of the leaf and a decrease in the growth of the tree. It is also possible for the leaves to wilt and turn yellow and/or brown. The branches may die or wilt as well. If you have a fruit tree suffering from root rot, the fruit production may also decrease on the lower branches. If root rot is not treated, it can cause the health of the tree to decline until it dies. The tree may be able to live for months or poor health or it may die quickly.

If the color of your tree's bark or leaves has changed, the branches are starting to wilt, or the tree is not growing at the pace it used to, there is a good chance your tree is sick. For more information, contact J&T Tree Co. or a similar company.