There are several forms of spruce-killing canker diseases in the world, but the most dangerous and lethal by far is the cytospera canker.
This disease is a killer of substantial proportions, and its most common victims include the Colorado, Norway and Koster’s blue spruce as well as the Douglas fir. To combat the disease, we need to understand it. Let’s take a deeper look at this canker and how it functions.
Symptoms of Cytospera Canker
If you are familiar with this disease, then you can easily spot the canker at work. It starts with the dying of lower branches and the browning of the needles, says the University of Illinois Extension. As the disease continues its progression, the higher branches are then affected.
A forest full of infected trees is not hard to miss. After the disease has run its course, the trees are left with an unsightly appearance as the browning of the infected branches creates a stark contrast from the healthier branches. Trees with cankers can also have leaking resin patches, with resin colored amber, purple-white or white.
Can this Disease Be Managed?
It many cases, cytospera canker can be managed to some degree, although at the earliest sign of the disease, you must act quickly. Take time to cut back all of the diseased branches to the trunk, as doing so will not only help to fight the disease but can aid in keeping the integrity of the tree intact. Unfortunately, management may be the only hope as there currently are no active fungicides that can fight the disease.
In addition to trying to manage the effects of the disease, you can also try to avoid getting the disease in the first place by knowing where it strikes most. The disease often targets older trees – 15 years of age and older, notes U of I – and trees that have already been attacked by other diseases or insects. Keep an eye out for these instances and with some care and a little luck, you can potentially avoid these cankers.
At Spruce Point Tree Farm, we strive to grow the healthiest, most appealing blue spruce trees in the country. We have had countless satisfied customers, and we would be honored to add you to the list.
If you are interested in buying some of our trees, have questions about tree-related diseases or you just want to take learn more about our available inventory, give us a call at 970-379-2241 today.