1st casualty of the year

Discussion in 'Maples' started by Houzi, Apr 6, 2012.

  1. Houzi

    Houzi Active Member 10 Years

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    Well something tagged this 4ft low grafted 'Crimson Princess' over winter.Shame as it was quite vigorous and even put out late growth.The only branch with signs of life is the very bottom one on the left.Guess I'll dig it up and chop the stem back to there,see if it's worth saving :(
     

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  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Probably bacterial blight.
     
  3. maplesandpaws

    maplesandpaws Active Member

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    Too bad, looks like it was a nice tree. I've had my share of losses already this spring:
    - 1yr Kawaii
    - 3yr Fjellheim
    - 2yr Crimson Queen that I was training into a cascade bonsai (had naturally grown that way; hardly had to do any wiring or shaping :(
    - 3yr Briella's Broom
    - 4yr Hana matoi
    These ones - with the exception of Fjellheim - I think kicked due to the extreme heat stress of last summer and then the very mild winter, followed by a rather humid and wet spring so far. Part of the blame I will shoulder as this is my first spring growing maples and I didn't take the appropriate precaution of spraying for fungus, etc.
    - 1yr Beni maiko
    - 1yr Akane
    - 1yr Mendocino Momiji
    These three I ordered this spring, the last two from a different source than the first one. Don't know why the maiko kicked, but the grower is replacing free of charge since it never even leafed out. The other two were leafing out decently when I received them, so I don't know if the shock of shipping/transplanting/new climate was too much, or what the deal is with them. Hopefully the grower is willing to do something...

    And my large Everred is barely leafing out, and then only on a few branches. *sigh* All I know is, losing trees SUCKS!
     
  4. Houzi

    Houzi Active Member 10 Years

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    Well I only had the tree one season,it was half price and at the end of the day I suppose,nothing unique.Dear me I'd say you've had more than your fair share of bad luck,my heart goes out to you.Sometimes I used to wonder why I got into maples after a bad spring or two,but trust me,things get better as you get used to their foibles.We can probably do little to protect them from certain attacks,but the most important things under our control are going easy with the watering and not panicking if the leaves dry up...check moisture first before watering,and keep young leaves out of strong sun and wind.These two things have cost me dearly but I've now learnt.If Ron's diagnosis is correct(cheers Ron),I don't feel so sad,I always think now,Hey! there's room for another maple...and there's always another one on your wish list:)
     
  5. Gomero

    Gomero Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Pseudomonas syringae?

    Gomero
     
  6. AlainK

    AlainK Renowned Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    That looks like it: I have 5 or 6 potted plants, including two that I had began to train as bonsai, that are apparently dead or dying.

    Except for one, all had a few branches trimmed to maintain a compact shape as the weather was unusually warm and the buds were starting to swell and I treated them with copper sulhate. Then after a spell of very low temperatures (over a week with temps as low as -12° at night, when a couple of weeks before we had had over 20° in the afternoon!), with aliette (Fosetyl-Al).

    The alternating very low and very high temperatures must have weakened them thus allowing the bacteria to enter trough the cuts.

    The one I regret the most is a Tsuma Gaki...
     
  7. Houzi

    Houzi Active Member 10 Years

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    Thanks guys for identifying the culprit,I admit with diseases,pathogens etc.I'm unable to do this with any accuracy at all.I'm not gonna waste much time with this tree,it's never gonna be spectacular even if it survives.Would it be safe to sink a potted maple in that spot now?..this is how I grow all my favourite maples,the in-ground ones I'm more willing to leave behind should I ever move.
    Sorry to hear of more losses,sounds like the weather's been playing havoc with many again this spring,I wish everyone good luck this year.
     
  8. AlainK

    AlainK Renowned Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    There are lots of more savvy users than me here, but personally, I wouldn't: it's difficult to identify precisely a disease, and if the germs, or fungus, or whatever you can call them, are still in the ground, you're in for another disappointing experience.

    So I'd plant a totally different species there.

    My two €cents worth...
     
  9. Houzi

    Houzi Active Member 10 Years

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    Hmm,that's a bit of a worry,there's a few potted maples sunk a couple of foot from there.Don't know if it's relevant but I've had to remove cat pooh several times from the base of this tree,could that.....?
     
  10. Gomero

    Gomero Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    If indeed it is Pseudomonas syringae, then it is perfectly safe to plant anything, including acers, at the same spot since:
    - Pseudomonas syringae is all over the place, no matter what you do (except maybe putting your plants in a wind tunnel to keep RH<10%...) you cannot avoid them
    - Pseudomonas syringae propagates by airborne water droplets: rain, fog, ...

    Amateur maple collectors have to live up to the fact that those trees are subjected to an array of pathogens and diseases, for which there are basically no treatments that really make a difference, which make them very shot lived. This applies equally to seedlings, grafted trees or cuttings. The only solution is to replace them.

    Gomero
     
  11. Houzi

    Houzi Active Member 10 Years

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    Cheers for that info Gomero.The tree does give the impression it's been attacked from the top,killing off the branches whilst the stem 'appears' to look healthyCould be deceiving I know...I'll see when I chop it.I didn't realise pseudomonas were so lethal but maybe I recall you suspecting them of killing some of your trees a while back?...Do you think the species itself is as vunerable as these cultivars? or are our gardens 'dirtier' than their natural habitat?
     
  12. maf

    maf Generous Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    For Pseudomonas syringae to kill a perfectly healthy plant would be unusual. There will usually be some underlying reason causing weakness in the Acer, such as infection with another pathogen, root damage, pest damage, drowning, growth not hardened off properly for winter, etc.

    I lost one with the blackened branches indicating possible Pseudomonas in spring last year; it failed to leaf out in spring and was as dead as a dodo. The cultivar was 'Enkan', not one that is considered particularly weak afaik, but I had only bought it the previous summer and I put its demise down to the growing practices of the supplier, who probably pushed it to reach saleable size in double-quick time. (It was not purchased from a JM specialist.) My own personal opinion is that plants that are grown slowly are much tougher, with woody rather than fleshy stems, and are much less susceptible to this blight.
     
  13. Gomero

    Gomero Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    ,

    This is what I have always thought.
    I have also lost this spring a number of apparently healthy trees with the same look and symptoms as Houzi's. The key symptom is that whole branches or the whole tree) with seemingly healthy buds fail to leaf out at the last minute and then the branches and twigs turn a shade of yellowish brown (not black at all). Notice that I say whole branches all at once and not something that progresses from the tip downwards. Really unusual for typical Pseudomonas infection.

    Gomero
     
  14. Houzi

    Houzi Active Member 10 Years

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    Hmm,Maf may be right,though I don't know who actually grows the plants.It could have been weakened and not yet settled in the ground.I must admit some cultivars seem to struggle and take a couple of years to settle in my alkaline soil(not ideal)It was from B&Q one of our national DIY stores.I have however got 5 more 6ft trees from them doing ok.It was only with me one season.
    As Gomero says it's alarming how it can wipe out all the branches so quickly.The only thing I can think of is that I didn't do any pruning on this tree this autumn/winter,but I did do some light pruning in summer,a good time for healing but I suspect the most active time for pathogens/diseases.Winter seems an unlikely time to get infected to me,however the buds never got the chance to start swelling(already dead I presume) so my guess is it entered when pruned,and with the increasingly mild autumns and late winters we have,carried on spreading until dormancy and beyond?
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2012

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