Is Your Tree On Fire? – Bacterial Leaf Scorch Video

Bacterial Leaf Scorch is a systemic disease caused by bacteria, which invades the water and nutrient conducting tissues.

Commonly Infected Species Include: Oaks, Sycamores, Elms, Maples, Mulberries, and Sweet Gum.

When infected with Bacterial Leaf Scorch

  • Leaves develop normally early in the season and symptom expression begins in June and July.
  • Necrosis begins along the leaf margin and spreads toward the veins in an irregular pattern.
  • Green tissue is separated from dead tissue by a yellow or reddish brown band or halo.
  • Bacterial leaf scorch symptoms will reappear in the same limbs year after year and eventually spread to other limbs.
  • Infected trees will display an overall decline in vigor, branch dieback, and premature death.
Brown Leaves Bacterial Leaf ScorchBacterial Leaf Scorch Dead TissueBacterial Leaf Scorch

Although there is no outright cure for Bacterial Leaf Scorch yearly therapeutic treatments are used to suppress the infection and symptoms.

Therapeutic treatment for bacterial leaf scorch1) First, holes are drilled into the tree’s trunk. Although drilling holes in trees is typically a bad idea it is necessary for this process and the way the holes are drilled allows the tree to repair itself quickly without lasting damage.
2) Second, the tips of the micro-injection system are carefully inserted into the holes.
3) Once all the tips are inserted and the system is connected the tree will begin to uptake the liquid antibiotic.

By injecting the antibiotics this way, the tree’s vascular system pulls the antibiotics throughout the whole tree, suppressing the infection. Although micro-injections are a therapeutic treatment rather than a cure for Bacterial Leaf Scorch the results can be dramatic.


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Samantha Huff

Samantha Huff is the marketing coordinator at RTEC Treecare. She enjoys learning about the technical aspects of trees and the insects and diseases that prey on them. She hopes that these articles can help homeowners gain control of their tree and shrub maintenance by being aware of the signs and symptoms of unhealthy trees.

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