Please see the photos below. These leaf depictions are a result of Anthracnose Fungus which manifests itself in a few different ways.

These are Maple leaves. This situation may or may not be evident just yet but a lot of trees will display similar damage over the coming month. Maple, Oak and a few other tree varieties can get Anthracnose. The wetter the Spring, the more issues there will be with all varieties of fungus and we all know just how wet this Spring has been in the Chicago suburbs.

Anthracnose is an airborne spore which blows onto susceptible trees and even some shrubs. We do ‘not’ recommend treating for this particular fungus because it is ‘not’ a yearly occurrence like it is with Apple Scab Fungus on Crabs or more recently, Rhizosphaera Needle Cast Fungus on Spruce trees. The extent to which Anthracnose Fungus will affect trees is an unknown in any given year. We must be ‘proactive’ in treating for any fungus and once a fungal condition begins to show visible signs, it is already too late to treat for that season. Why spend money on a treatment that is only an issue on occasion?

This next photo shows seemingly healthy green Ash leaves strewn about on a brick patio.This situation is also a result of Anthracnose Fungus. In the case of Ash trees, Anthracnose attacks leaf stems causing them to weaken and disconnect from the branch. As a result, individual leaves or clusters of leaves fall to the ground. Other than being unsightly, this condition should stop occurring after a few weeks. In a bad year, an Ash can lose up to 75% of its leaves but the tree will re-foliate as the Summer progresses. Your tree will not die due to this condition.

Better Treatment for Apple Scab

We are certain that all of our customers are loving their treated Crab Apple, Hawthorne and Maple trees this year!

A clients Crab Apple treated by Tree Green. Photographed 8/17/17.
Notice the thick, full canopy and the shade and privacy the tree provides.

Apple Scab Fungus is horrendous again this year as is evidenced by this second photo. If Apple Scab is really bad then so is Quince Rust on Hawthornes and Tar Spot Fungus on Maples.

This photo was also taken on 8/17/17 and is on the same street as the Crab in the 1st photo.

As you drive around, compare your treated, crab apple’s appearance to others in your neighborhood. You will notice a similar, amazing difference!

How did we come up with an effective treatment? What happened was this…

Two years ago, in 2015, we received 8 or 9 calls from clients saying their Crab Apple seemed to be suffering from Apple Scab despite us having treated their tree that season. Upon inspection, we did see some of the fungus present and although their Crab didn’t look nearly as bad as their neighbors un-treated Crab, they weren’t the results they, or we, were used to getting. Since we had only received 8 or 9 calls out of over 1,200 Crab Apple clients we thought that maybe it was a fluke and some other environmental issues were at play so we didn’t make too much of it.

But then 2016 came along and with it so did over 40 calls and emails from clients with the same observation; their Crabs seemed to have Apple Scab despite having received treatment. We figured if 40 clients called, there could have possibly been another 100 or so who noticed the same thing but chose not to call, attributing the lack of results as we did the year prior, to be a fluke.

We went back and looked at the trees of the 8 or 9 clients who had initially called in 2015. Those trees were in even worse shape in 2016 than they were the year prior so we knew there was a serious issue to deal with. We knew this trend would accelerate  rapidly in the next few years.

We determined that the fungal spores were developing a ‘resistance’ to the high-end fungicidal products that we have used for over 20 years so we had to make a change. Fungicides come in 9 different classifications. This year we decided to make a wholesale change and switched to entirely different, and more expensive, classifications of fungicides to get better results this season. Going forward we will rotate products year to year to prevent the possibility of another resistance issue.

Tree care is a highly complex field. It’s not much different than your doctor making a change in personal medications when they find that an earlier medication is not working to its expected potential. We’ve all heard about antibiotics no longer controlling certain infections.

So what did we do?

This year we acidified the spray tank water to lower the water’s pH to a level that helps products work at their peak. Then we mixed three (3) different classifications of fungicidal products together and added a surfactant that helps the product better absorb into the leaf and repel rain after it has been applied. We know of no other company who goes to the lengths that we do to get the best possible results.

If we treated your Crab Apple this season, we hope that you really enjoy your healthy Crab Apple tree(s). Sorry in advance for all the extra leaves you will have to rake this Fall!  Enjoy the rest of your Summer.




Winter Burn on Maple Trees

We’ve had a number of clients asking what Winter Burn and/or Anthracnose Fungus that we referenced in our last blog post looks like on Maple Trees. So, we decided to send out a follow-up photo.

anthracnose on maple leavesNotice the browning and puckering of the leaves. In some cases the leaves may actually be even more shriveled and blackened in color.  Most of this type of damage will appear either in the lower quadrants of the tree or on the windward side.

Again, be aware that this type of damage will show up on many different species of trees and shrubs. No need to be overly concerned. Just something Mother Nature decided to dish out this year!