Your trees are valuable items of your property: they contribute to landscaping, help protect wildlife, influence your home value, and can live for hundreds of years. That’s why it is essential to make sure you are keeping them healthy, especially from the dangers of tree diseases.

In Pennsylvania, tree diseases thrive in the humid climate. Below you’ll find more information about how to identify common Pennsylvania tree diseases, and what action to take if you think your trees have been affected.

Signs and Symptoms of Tree Disease

Diseases can have devastating effects on your trees, potentially killing them and other surrounding plants. For this reason, a tip to identifying Pennsylvania tree disease is to monitor frequently for the signs and symptoms of a damaged or decaying tree:

  1. Wilting
  2. Spots or blemishes on leaves, bark, and/or fruit
  3. Moldy-looking or fuzzy areas
  4. Leaning
  5. Holes in leaves
  6. Dropping branches

But wait, there’s more. Take action with early detection and begin a plant health care plan to treat the disease.

Identifying Pennsylvania tree diseases can be challenging, especially during transitional periods like seasonal changes. If you have noticed signs and symptoms, then it might be time to go deeper with your inspection. Once you have identified the specific tree disease, you can take action with a plant health care plan. The expert arborists at Cutting Edge Tree Professionals are equipped to help you along this process. From preemptive services like routine inspection and preventative care to disease fighting diagnosis and treatment plans, our specialists can stop disease from taking the life of your tree early or spreading to other plants in your yard.

Identifying Common Tree Diseases in Pennsylvania

While there are many Pennsylvania tree diseases, there are five that we have identified for you that are highly dangerous as they easily spread. Now how can you identify them?

1. Verticillium Wilt

  • Heavy seed production
  • Wilting
  • Discolored bark

Verticillium Wilt is a fungal disease that typically affects deciduous trees. Depending on the stage of disease, early signs can be detected in heavy seed production, smaller leaves, and margin leaves turning a brown color. If more severe, impacted trees tend to wilt on one side of the tree, and bark will contain discolored streaks.

2. Needle Cast

  • Leaf thinning
  • Brown or purple needles

Needle Cast is a particularly dangerous tree disease because it can be difficult to spot physical symptoms until late in the infection. The typical symptoms include tree leaf thinning, and discoloration of needles to a purple or brown color.

3. Anthracnose

  • Small dead spots or holes on leaves
  • Premature defoliation
  • Leaf vein browning

Anthracnose is a group of fungal diseases that typically affects deciduous trees. Signs of Anthracnose infection include premature defoliation, small dead spots or holes on leaves, browning along leaf veins, and twig decay.

4. Powdery Mildew

  • White powder on leaves
  • Leaf distortion
  • Leaf browning

Powdery Mildew is a fungal infection that results in powdery white spores on top of a tree’s leaves, particularly younger trees. Besides a noticeable white residue, Powdery Mildew can also result in leaf distortion and discoloration, typically to a brown or yellow color.

5. Armillaria Root Rot

  • Smaller and discolored leaves
  • Delayed growth
  • Mushrooms at base of tree

Armillaria Root Rot is found typically in drier areas, starting at the root of trees and working their way upward. Typical symptoms of Armillaria Root Rot include smaller or yellow-colored leaves, delayed or stunted growth, and the appearance of mushrooms at the base of the tree.

Addressing Pennsylvania Tree Diseases

If you have encountered disease on one or more of your trees, the next step is taking action. Many diseased trees, if caught early, can be nursed back to health without having long term effect on the tree. However, if unaddressed, the issues can spread to other plants in your yard and require a more serious solution.

The first step to ensuring that your trees are healthy and protected is being proactive with your regular maintenance care. By ensuring that your trees are being pruned, watered, and kept clean, your trees should have a regular defense to fight against disease.

However, if disease is detected, addressing it can be as simple as continuing your everyday routine or as severe as uprooting the tree, depending on the severity of the damage. Below are the typical care suggestions if your tree is showing signs of disease:

  • Mild: a continuation of your everyday routine, with added fertilization and fungicides depending on diagnosis. Frequent upkeep activities should include pruning for damaged branches, watering, and monitoring of disease progression.
  • Severe: always recommended to acquire professional help. Severe cases of tree disease may require heavier fungicide plans, with larger maintenance and soil evaluation. If root rot or internal decay is detected, uprooting the tree is the best option to protect your yard.

We’ve Got Your Back

Tree disease spreads fast, making it increasingly difficult to treat if the signs are not noticed quickly. And while monitoring for disease can be done at home, having a professional regularly evaluate your trees is the best way to ensure their health and protection.

If you are in need of assistance or have concerns about a tree’s health, the professional arborists at Cutting Edge Tree Professionals are available year-round for evaluations and consultations. 

We offer thorough upkeep services like pruning and fertilization to ensure that your trees can stay healthy and avoid disease. But in the case that your trees are showing signs of illness, our expert team is equipped with the skills to diagnose and fight disease with a comprehensive tree health care plan.

For more information, call us today at (814) 201-9757 or fill out our online consultation form.

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