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We planted some (apple?) trees a few years ago. Our soil is mostly clay and rock and known to be acidic. The local nursery that sold us the trees said they should do well here.

Six years later and not much growth, one died. The other seems to be doing not so good. Can anybody give me some pointers? I never see any bugs on the leaves.









In the early spring, the trees look perfect. Nice and full and green. Then they start doing whatever is happening in the pics. Then the leaves start thinning out. Eventually it looks like a twig with three or four leaves, like Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree. :lol:

Thoughts?
 

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If one is not going to spray very regularly, you should have planted "scab resistant varieties".
 

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@jimr is right on the money with his analysis.

Classic apple scab and fungal infections are by far the biggest challenge apple growers face. Trees are susceptible every time there is a wetting event, i.e. rain. Spores are released and can infect the trees. The amount of time to prevent is measured in hours depending on temperature.

https://www.extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/BP/BP-1-W.pdf


Hygiene in the orchard helps and that is why I pick up all the leaves every Fall and Spring to remove any pathogens. However that is hard to do in a commercial orchard.
 

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Cedar trees nearby (about 200 ft) caused that on my apple trees in kansas some years back. Did not affect its apple production but did put spots on the leaves.
Cedar rust was my first thought. Around me cedar trees grow like weeds. I put in some apple trees not long after I bought the property and cedar rust has been an ongoing problem since day 1. I actually just gave up and let what apples the trees do produce feed the deer.
 

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Mine do the same thing. County agent said that it was cedar rust. Firewood Bandit - what spray should we use?
 

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I have zero cedar trees around here. What should I treat them with?
 

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TREATMENT

FOR APPLE HOSTS: Once infected, no treatment is effective on the current year’s foliage. Preventative treatment, however, is very effective.

Late Winter: Dormant oil should be applied in the late winter to smother overwintering spores on bark, branches, twigs, and buds.

Spring: A fungicide should be applied following package directions, usually when the flower buds turn pink, again when the petals have fallen, and once more about 10 days later. A light spray on the soil below the plant might help as well.

Fall: Thorough clean-up of all fallen leaves will greatly reduce the source of new spores the following spring. Get the leaves off your property if at all possible rather than putting them in your compost.

Cedar Apple Rust - Weston Nurseries
 

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Mine do the same thing. County agent said that it was cedar rust. Firewood Bandit - what spray should we use?

This is a very complicated subject.

It all starts with predicting "outbreaks". This is temp and rain dependent. This web site will give info on degree days and amount of time to get cover sprays on the trees. It is for fungal as well as insects, and soil moisture cumulative.
NEWA - Home Page



There is no one magic bullet for fungal infections. A covery spray needs to be on the tree before the outbreak occurs, also an "after the fact" product which can cure fungal infections are generally used at the same time. Ralleye is an example of the latter.

Traditional cover sprays I use are:
Captan
Sovran
Roper
COCS
Ralleye
Manzate

Some are most suited to warm weather and some to cooler. another post mentioned dormant oil which I use but that also takes care of insect larva and eggs.


The rule for fungicides is NEVER use the same spray and mode of action over twice in a row, it needs to be changed up constantly.
 
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