3 Proactive Strategies for Preventing Tree Fungus

Posted on: 22 May 2019

If you're like most homeowners, creating and maintaining an appealing outdoor living space is important to you for a variety of reasons. You probably enjoy spending time in your backyard with family and friends during outdoor cookouts, a quiet cup of coffee on your deck on beautiful mornings, and relaxing with a cold beverage under the shade of a tall tree on hot afternoons and evenings. However, it's hard to enjoy spending time in an outdoor environment that contains unhealthy trees, which is why vigilance concerning fungal pathogens is essential for those desiring to maintain a healthy backyard environment.

The major problem with tree fungus is that by the time you notice visible signs of its presence, it's usually too late to save the tree — when fruiting fungal bodies appear on the bark of the tree or the ground around the trunk, that's a sign that the tree has rotted from within. Homeowners need to be proactive about practicing preventive measures to ensure that fungus doesn't gain a foothold in their outdoor environments. Here are just three strategies you can use to help keep fungal organisms at bay. 

Water Wisely

Overwatering is among the biggest reasons for fungal disorders among landscaping plants and trees. Established trees generally don't need to be watered except in times of drought, and when they are watered, it should be deeply and thoroughly about once per month while drought conditions exist. Take care not to let water from sprinklers get the foliage of your trees wet or to create small water pools near the root zones of your trees.

Remove Fallen Leaves

Fallen leaves that are allowed to remain on the ground provide prime conditions for the growth of development of fungal colonies. Leaves should be raked at least once per week during autumn. You should also take care to remove dead and dying branches from your trees because fungal organisms are attracted to this material. A company such as Phoenix Tree Service can send an arborist to your property to remove the braches.

Sanitize Pruning Shears and Other Gardening Tools

One of the most common ways for fungal pathogens to spread is by tools that have not been properly sanitized. For instance, if you prune a tree that's infected with fungal spores and then use that same tool to prune other trees, you've probably spread the pathogen to multiple trees. Always sterilize pruning tools before moving on to the next tree or shrub. 


Keeping Your Trees Healthy

About a year ago, I realized that our front trees were starting to look a little funny. Some of the leaves were wilted, but we weren't anywhere near autumn. The bark on the trunk also seemed to be rotting away, which was frustrating and disappointing. Fortunately, a friend of mine told me to call a professional arborist for help. He came out, inspected the trees, and injected some special pesticides into the trunk. Within a few months, they started to look a lot better. Our arborist also trimmed our trees to reduce the weight load on the branches and to improve their shape. Check out this blog for information about tree trimming.