landscape diseases

Consider Disease When Choosing Plants

Plants get diseases just like humans and animals. Before deciding to add a plant to the landscape, it’s a good idea to consider the potential for disease. Some plant diseases are easily transmissible among different species and can spread throughout an entire neighborhood.

Plants that are placed in locations contrary to their natural preferences will become stressed, fail to flourish, and are more vulnerable to attack from diseases, along with a variety of insect pests. When individuals see a plant they want to add to the landscape, do some research to ascertain if it’s prone to diseases ranging from mildew and root rot to blight and canker.

Soil, Sun and Water

The soil composition in the landscape is important. Some plants require alkaline soil while others prefer soil that’s acidic. Plants that need soil with excellent drainage will develop root rot in wet and soggy conditions. The spores of fungal infection can spread among different plants and be transmitted by insects. Heat and humidity provide a breeding ground for mold, bacterial, and fungal infection. Light requirements can vary widely and shade plants will quickly wither in full sun.

Proximity

Some very disparate plants can spread disease simply by being in close proximity to each other. There are plant diseases that require two hosts to complete its life cycle. An example is cedar-apple rust. The fungal spores infect eastern red cedars and are released in the spring where they infect the leaves of apple and crabapple trees. The disease matures over the summer and mature spores are released in the autumn to infect the cedars. The same type of co-infection affects junipers and quince.

Choosing Plants

It’s critical to purchase plants that are healthy and show no signs of disease. There are dozens of plants native to the South Florida environment, while others have been introduced to the area from locations with similar growing conditions and can thrive.

White pine is a species that’s not a native, but grows well in the state. However, it doesn’t tolerate salt and shouldn’t be planted where they’re exposed to saltwater. Some plants within the same family that are introduced from abroad have increased hardiness and resistance to disease in the Florida environment.

RCH Landscaping is a full-service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach, and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians has an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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disease

Diseases that will Ruin Your Landscape

Insects that can infect your landscape and create havoc may be your primary concern. However, there are a variety of diseases of which you need to be aware. Some have the potential to infect plantings near and far. Others can wreak so much damage that flower beds may need to be evacuated and trees eliminated if the disease isn’t identified early and control measures prove ineffective.

Diseases can affect the roots, stem/trunk or flower/fruit production. Other diseases are cosmetic in nature. While they won’t kill plantings, they can affect their aesthetic value and the appearance of your property. Diseases are difficult to identify, as some are similar in appearance to insect predations. It’s always best to seek the expertise of a plant specialist.

Armillaria Root Rot

Also known as mushroom root rot, a tree or shrub infected with the fungi may appear wilted, have little foliage, and remaining leaves look shriveled and dry. The fungus prevents plantings from absorbing water and it’s the most common fungi species infecting shrubs and trees in Florida.

Bacteria

More than 170 types of bacteria can affect plants and they can cause symptoms ranging from leaf spots and yellowing of leaves and fronds to plant wilt and death. Citrus Greening is one example. Typically found in citrus groves, it can also affect backyard citrus. Yields drop, eventually stop, and the tree dies.

Black Spot/Leaf Spot

Both types of the fungi produce black spots on the upper surface of leaves. Primarily affecting roses, it can also be found on the leaves, flowers and fruits of other plantings. It flourishes in hot, humid conditions. Black spot is the most serious disease of roses in Florida and can cause severe defoliation.

In Cercospora Leaf Spot, a small round spot appears and grows larger as the disease progresses. The center of the spot eventually turns a tan/gray color. The leaf dies and the lesions can appear on any other part of the plant.

Lethal Bronzing Disease

Affecting palms, the disease is relatively new to Florida and is caused by a phytoplasma – a unique type of bacteria. It results in a quick decline of the palm and death. There is no cure.

Mildew

Powdery mildew and downy mildew are both fungus infections that are similar in appearance The symptoms of yellowing leaves and white spots are the same, but downy mildew is more grayish colored. Powdery mildew can be anywhere on the leaf surface, while downy mildew is limited by leaf veins.

RCH Landscaping is a full-service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach, and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians has an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

Read more