Arborist b 480-969-8808Fire Blight

 

Fire Blight

Aptly named, fire blight gives trees and shrubs the appearance that portions of their branches have been scorched by fire. Blossoms and leaves of some twigs suddenly wilt and turn brown or black. Fire blight is caused by bacteria that are particularly active in warm, moist weather. Bees, rain, and infected pruning tools spread the disease.

Damage
Tips of infected branches may hang down. The bark at the base of the blighted twig takes on a water-soaked appearance, then looks dark, sunken, and dry. Fire blight attacks a few twigs at a time to create a flaglike effect of dead foliage on different areas of the plant.

Control
Prune out infected branches about
12 inches beyond any discoloration and destroy them. Disinfect pruning tools by dipping after each cut in a solution of 1 part chlorine bleach and 9 parts water. Avoid excess nitrogen fertilizer in spring and early summer. It forces succulent growth, which is more susceptible to fire blight infection.


 

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