Anyone know why my branches are turning black?

Discussion in 'Maples' started by Bubbasweet, Aug 2, 2016.

  1. Bubbasweet

    Bubbasweet Member

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    Location:
    North Van
    a few of the branches have black sections about 5 - 8 inches. Is the tree going to die? I have no idea whay this is happening. I water them. I did give them a little miracle grow a whilte back but not sure why this would happen. Anything I can do at this stage to salvage? The main trunk has no black spots. Should I cut the branches that have the black on them off?

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  2. maplesandpaws

    maplesandpaws Active Member

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    KS -> northern AL, USA
    Unfortunately, your tree has a pseudomonas infection; coral bark maples are more prone to this. Your only possibilities of saving it at this point are using a copper-based fungicide/bactericide (I personally use Phyton 27; I got mine from eBay, a small 2oz bottle will last you a long time) and prune off the affected areas and hope it hasn't spread. The infection is spread through water, so if you have any other maples, you need to keep this one away from them as any splash-back or runoff (when watering or from rain) can potentially infect the other trees. Unfortunately, it thrives in warm humid environments like what you have in Vancouver.

    I would do a topical spray AND a drench of the copper product (follow the label directions). When pruning, you'll have to prune off the affected branch(es) at least 2-3 nodes down/in from the visibly active infection and thoroughly sterilize your cutting tools after EVERY SINGLE cut to avoid potentially transferring the infection to healthy wood or other trees. I would also then dab a bit of undiluted copper product directly on the cut(s) - qtip or the like - before using a cutpaste to seal the wound and hope that you'll be able to save the tree. Also, if you have pruned this tree in the week or two prior to it visibly showing the infection, and not sterilized your tools after doing so, you may have transferred the infection to other parts of the tree already, or to other trees. Good luck!
     
  3. Bubbasweet

    Bubbasweet Member

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    If I decide to scrap the tree and get a new one, can I use same dirt or is that contaminated also?
     
  4. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Use new soil.
     
  5. Bubbasweet

    Bubbasweet Member

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    Ok so I bought a new tree. I used new sea soil dirt. How can I keep the soil optimum to try and make tree most healthy it can be. I heard you are to water but make sure they drain fully. Also should I put a little compost in the pots? It says not to use Nitrogen fertilizer like miracle grow. Any tips on keeping plenty of nutrients in soil?
     
  6. Bubbasweet

    Bubbasweet Member

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    Also how often do people change or mix in new soil?
     
  7. maplesmagpie

    maplesmagpie Active Member

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    Location:
    Zone 5b, along Lake Michigan in WI
    I'm fairly new to all this (a few years in), but in my potting mixture I used a mix of:

    bagged garden soil
    sand
    small pine bark chips
    peat

    The pine bark chips and the soil were probably each 40% of the mixture, and the peat/sand were each 10 or 15%.

    This mixture drains quickly but still retains a bit of moisture. My maples seem to be doing well with it. I only change the soil when I change the pot (when the tree has grown out of its current pot). For fertilizer I've read you should do it early in the season (so new growth has a chance to harden before winter), and that JM-specific fertilizers like Happy Frog brand are good.

    Please correct me if any of this is off-- there are a lot of people here with much more experience than me.
     

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