Peach trees are relatively simple to develop, but respiratory ailments can attack various areas of the tree including the bark. Blisters, lesions, discoloration and gummy sap are a few of the signs your tree may be contaminated and requires attention. With proper care, a healthy peach tree can live around 50 decades, but untreated fungal disorders can affect fruit production as well as kill trees.
Anthracnose, occasionally referred to as crater rot, is caused by the Colletotrichum gloeosporioides and C. acutatum fungi. Although symptoms appear like sunken spots on the peach fruit, the fungi overwinters in cracks and crevices in bark, ready to attack again during the next growing season. Treatment involves removing rotted fruit on and around trees and with a fungicide such as captan all season long.
If a tree is infected with gummosis (Botryosphaeria dothidea), little blisters with a raised center and a gummy resin begin to look on young bark through the late growing season or the next spring. Fungicides are not always effective against this disease, although captan repeatedly applied to bark may help. The best defense is to keep trees from becoming waterlogged and to remove and destroy wood. Some peach tree types, such as Harbrite, are far less susceptible to gummosis.
Peach canker (Cytospora leucostoma and Cytospora cincta) is a primary cause of death to peach trees. The very first signs include gummy sap around wounded bark which appears in the first spring. Later symptoms include black specks on bark, miniature curled orange or amber strands and lifeless callus ridges. Instead of fungicides, which are ineffective, prevention involves avoiding pruning weak narrow-angled crotches in young trees and waiting until early spring to prune. Together with already-affected trees, remove or burn all cankered bark and limbs.
Varnish Fungus Rot
Varnish fungus decay (Ganoderma lucidum) can occur on trees that are healthy, though it’s more common on older trees that are stressed from wounds and drought. The only visible symptom is a shelf-like fungal conk on bark near the base of this tree that is coloured a rusty orange-red or a creamy dark red. However, by the time that the conk seems, the harm is generally so extensive among the tree’s root system, that death can occur rapidly. There’s not any prevention or therapy aside from cutting damaged trees and removing roots.
Peach Leaf Curl
The peach leaf curl fungus (Taphrina deformans) strikes leaves, flowers and fruit on peach trees, but like anthracnose, it overwinters as spores on bark and buds. According to its name, the leaves of infected trees curl upward and change color to yellow or red before falling in the tree. When the disease is present, chemical control will not help, however lime sulfur or a copper-based fungicide applied to bark before buds look can help prevent illness.