Fungal Infections in Pine Trees

Answer

According to research conducted at Oregon State University, pines make up the majority of the world’s population of coniferous trees. There are over 100 different species of pine trees, of which 30 are native to the continent of North America. There is a wide range in hardiness among members of the Pinus genus, from U. Depending on the species, the United States Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones range from 3 to 11. Pines, according to the Clemson State University Extension, are sensitive to a wide variety of illnesses and other difficulties; however, the majority of these problems may be avoided by planting the pines according to their unique cultural needs. {{!! -!! Pines often suffer from diseases caused by rust. For instance, the Cronartium ribicola fungus is responsible for the blister rust that affects white pines (Pinus strobus). Cankers are regions of a tree’s bark that get swelled and inflamed due to a fungal infection. These trees are hardy in USDA zones 3 through 8. As the cankers become larger, they wrap or girdle the branches or the whole tree, which ultimately results in the tree’s death or severe weakening. This infection takes place when plants belonging to the genus Ribes, such as currants and gooseberries, are grown in close proximity to white pines. Take down these nearby bushes, and then use pruners that have been disinfected to cut away any damaged parts of the pine. {{!! -!! The fungus known as Cronartium quercuum is responsible for pine-oak gall rust. Pine trees are prone to developing growths that are known as galls. According to research conducted by PennState Extension, these galls produce yellowish spores that infect red oaks. Remove galls with pruners that have been sterilised. Needle rust is a largely harmless infection that creates whitish structures on the needles. Pine-pine gall rust is a disorder that is characterised by rounded galls on the branches. Other types of rust include fusiform, which creates galls that can later become cankers; fusiform, which creates galls that can later become cankers; and needle rust. Remove galls from plants using pruners that have been sterilised. {{!! -!! The vast majority of pine species are prone to developing needlecast diseases. The Ploioderma lethale fungus infects and kills vegetation that has previously grown in prior years. According to the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, the needles on the lower crown of the tree turn brown and then fall off. This fungus does not have a substantial influence on older trees, but it may have an adverse effect on younger trees. Allocating sufficient space between the trees would facilitate healthy air circulation and make it easier to collect needle litter. {{!! -!! Cyclaneusma needlecast is brought on by the fungus known as Cyclaneusma minus. The needles become a yellowish colour, and the surface develops some brownish stripes. The needlecast disease caused by Lophodermium typically strikes a tree around a year after it has been infected. The needles in the lowest part of the tree start to turn a different hue and eventually fall to the ground. The fungus Mycosphaerella dearnessii is responsible for the disease known as brown spot needle blight, which manifests on the leaves as bands or spots. In order to assist in the management of these diseases, increasing the light and air penetration into young pines is recommended. {{!! -!! In most cases, diseases caused by rot are lethal to trees. The fungus known as Heterobasidion annosum is responsible for the annosus wood and butt rot. Near the trunks of diseased trees, fungal bodies begin to grow, and the surrounding foliage dwindles and becomes sparse. As the roots rot and become weaker, the trees become more susceptible to being uprooted by storms. Cotton root rot may affect Afghan pines, also known as Pinus eldarica, which are prone to growing in alkaline soil and are hardy in USDA zones 10 through 13. {{!! -!! According to Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, the fungus known as Phymatotrichum omnivorum is the one to blame for the illness known as cotton root rot. The tree quickly withers and turns its leaves a yellowish-brown colour. White pines are susceptible to root rot brought on by the fungus Verticicladiella procera. The needles turn a yellowish colour and eventually die, but they do not fall off the tree. Near the soil line, cankers that leak fluid develop. Take down any sick trees and avoid planting pines in that area in the future. {{!! -!! }} Sphaeropsis sapinae produces Sphaeropsis tip blight. The new development at the bottom part of the tree is susceptible to cankers, which are lesions that harm new growth and often result in the death of the lower branches. The blight that affects seedlings may be caused by a number of different fungus, including Pythium and Sclerotium. These fungi are responsible for the death of early seedlings. {{!! -!! }} Fusarium moniliforme f. spp. Pitch canker is caused by an organism called subglutinans. Cankers that are sticky and ooze resin form on the tree’s branches and trunk. The Phytophthora cinnamomi fungus is responsible for the littleleaf disease that affects shortleaf pines like Pinus echinata, which is said to be hardy in USDA zones 6 through 9 according to the Missouri Botanical Garden. There is a possibility that the needles could get discoloured or small, and the crown will become thinner. After an infestation, it takes infected trees anywhere from one to six years to die. Maintaining proper hygiene, ensuring enough ventilation, and enhancing soil drainage are all helpful control measures.

Watch for Rust Infections

Rust infections are common in pines. The Cronartium ribicola fungus, for example, causes blister rust in white pines (Pinus strobus). These trees, which are hardy in USDA zones 3 through 8, develop swollen, infected areas of bark called cankers. As the cankers expand, they encircle or girdle the branches or entire tree, weakening or killing the plant. This infection occurs when members of the Ribes genus such as currants and gooseberries are planted near white pines. Remove these nearby bushes and use disinfected pruners to remove any damaged areas of the pine.

The Cronartium quercuum fungus causes pine-oak gall rust. Swollen growths called galls form on pine trees. These galls release yellowish spores that infect red oaks, reports PennState Extension. Prune galls with disinfected pruners. Other types of rust include Fusiform, which creates galls that can later become cankers; needle rust, a largely harmless infection that creates whitish structures on the needles; and pine-pine gall rust, a disorder characterized by rounded galls on the branches. Prune out galls with disinfected pruners.

Check for Needlecast Disorders

Most pine species are susceptible to needlecast infections. The Ploioderma lethale fungus attacks foliage that formed in previous years. The needles on the lower crown turn brown and fall from the tree, says Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. This fungus does not significantly impact older trees, but young trees may be weakened. Space trees adequately to ensure good air circulation and clean up fallen needles.

The Cyclaneusma minus fungus causes Cyclaneusma needlecast. The needles turn yellow and brownish bands form on the surface. Lophodermium needlecast usually attacks trees about a year after infection. The needles on the lower portion of the tree become discolored and fall to the ground. Brown spot needle blight, caused by the Mycosphaerella dearnessii fungus, appears as bands or spots on the foliage. Increase light and air penetration to young pines to help control these diseases.

Identifying Root and Wood Rot

Rot infections are usually fatal to trees. Annosus wood and butt rot is caused by the Heterobasidion annosum fungus. Fungal bodies form near the base of infected trees, and the foliage becomes thin and sparse. The roots decay and weaken, and trees may blow over during storms. Afghan pines (Pinus eldarica, hardy in USDA zones 10 through 13) that grow in alkaline soil are susceptible to cotton root rot.

The Phymatotrichum omnivorum fungus is responsible for the cotton root rot infection, says Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. The foliage turns yellow and the tree rapidly succumbs. The Verticicladiella procera fungus causes root rot in white pines. The needles turn yellow and die, but stay on the tree. Oozing cankers appear near the soil line. Remove infected trees and do not plant pines in the same location.

Watch for Other Infections

Sphaeropsis sapinae causes Sphaeropsis tip blight. Cankers form on the new growth near the lower portion of the tree and destroy new growth, often killing the lower branches. Seedling blight is caused by several different fungi, including Pythium and Sclerotium. These fungi destroy young seedlings.

Fusarium moniliforme f. spp. subglutinans is responsible for pitch canker. Oozing, resinous cankers appear on the branches and trunk. The Phytophthora cinnamomi fungus causes littleleaf disease in shortleaf pine, like Pinus echinata, which the Missouri Botanical Garden says is hardy in USDA zones 6 through 9. The needles may be discolored or undersized, and the crown thins out. Infected trees succumb between one and six years after infection. Good sanitation, airflow and improving soil drainage can help with control.