If your sycamore tree is making your yard look like October in the middle of June, you’re not alone. It’s a common fungal disease called “anthracnose.” Symptoms are yellowing leaves that shrivel on the limbs & eventually fall. Like all plant diseases, it requires three things to develop:
- A susceptible host (sycamore).
- A pathogen (anthracnose).
- Favorable conditions for disease development (rainy weather when buds emerge; warm spring temps).
The first two conditions are certainties every year. Sycamores are susceptible & anthracnose spores are waiting on branches & twigs in early spring. Unknown is whether or not it will rain when new leaves emerge. Rain splashes spores through the canopy & onto tender new leaves. It’s also unknown if temperatures will favor the disease or help inhibit it. The good news is that new leaves often push through by July & the tree almost looks normal by mid-summer. However, anthracnose can damage twigs & branches, causing deformities known as “witches’ brooms.”
Pro Care offers specialized cambium injections for current full-service clients on our Tree/Shrub Care Programs. Treatments made this year would be for suppression next year. The optimal timing for cambium injections is approximately 1-month before the first frost. Our Certified Arborists are ready to help!