Knowing the type of pests and diseases that can infect your trees can help you spot any problems quickly, before they become a really big problem. To give you a head start, here’s the top 10 tree problems found by Brisbane arborists in South East Queensland.
1. Brown Root Rot
Brown Root Rot is a common fungal disease that causes the tree roots to die and jeopardises the health and stability of the tree. Signs to look out for include mushy roots and wilting leaves. If caught early and treated by Brisbane arborists, the tree can usually be saved.
2. Cypress Canker
Also known as Cypress Dieback, Cypress Canker is a fungal disease that enters the tree via wounds in the bark and interferes with the tree’s conducting system. Signs include dieback occurring from the top of the tree down or individual branches turning brown and dying very quickly. If caught quickly enough, these trees can be saved.
Anthracnose is a fungal disease that affects a wide range of trees. Signs include sunken lesions and holes in stems, flowers and leaves. It thrives in damp and humid conditions, so it’s very common in Brisbane, but it can be treated.
4. Boring insects
Borers are attracted to unhealthy trees where they burrow into the bark and lay their eggs. The most obvious signs of borers, reported by Brisbane arborists, are the small holes they bore into the bark. Infected trees can take years to die but can be treated if diagnosed early enough.
Termites love wood, preferring dead woodring dead wood, but will still attack living trees. So if they infect trees close to your home, the next stop is inside your home! Signs include holes in the bark, wood shavings around the holes or on the floor and old termite wings.
6. Poinciana Looper Moth
These moths love trees, particularly Poinciana trees that grow across Brisbane. The caterpillars feed on the tree’s leaves and can cause severe defoliation, resulting in death of the tree. Signs include sighting the green caterpillars that can grow up to 7cm, as well as the skeletonising of the leaves.
7. Christmas Beetles
Known to attack Eucalyptus trees, Christmas Beetles can cause heavy leaf loss during the summer. Swarms of these beetles can defoliate trees very quickly. Signs to look for include rapid leaf loss of your Eucalyptus trees.
8. Kirramyces leaf diseases
There are four different fungal pathogens that infect the leaves of Eucalyptus trees and can cause severe defoliation. Signs include pale green leaf spots that turn yellow and distorted or buckled leaves. For treating these tree problems, you need to contact your nearest Brisbane arborist.
9. Myrtle Rust
Myrtle Rust is a fungal disease that attacks Eucalyptus trees and other members of the Myrtaceae family. This fungus attacks soft young leaves and stems and if left untreated can result in death of the tree. Brisbane arborists report that signs include small, purple spots on leaves along with bright yellow spores that form pustules inside the purple spots.
10. Gumleaf skeletoniser
A common pest of Eucalypt trees, the Gumleaf skeletoniser caterpillars can severely defoliate trees and cause widespread damage. Signs include bronzing of the leaves and skeleton-like damage to the leaves. Trees usually recover from these infestations over time, but repeated attacks can result in death of the tree.