Damage to pear tree

nothwehrApril 25, 2012

I have an asian pear tree that I planted in the Fall of 2010. For the second growing season in a row I have noticed that the apical/terminal bud(s) have been damaged. Essentially the apical bud has been removed. Importantly, the plant tissue "ends" left behind are black almost as if someone took a blow-torch and singed off the apical buds on the tree.

My original thought was fireblight but my understanding after doing some research is that fireblight is connected to tree flowering and this tree has not flowered yet since it is too young. I would worry that this was done by an animal (deer) but only on very rare occasions have deer been in my backyard and never this time of year. I have not notice any similar damage to any other plants that I am sure they would fine attractive. Also deer damage would not explain the black tissue left behind. The link to three images are not great but might give some idea. Any idea of what this might be from and what I can do in the future to prevent it? Thanks.


Here is a link that might be useful: pear tree

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It sure looks to me like it's been bitten off. But take heart -- the drive to grow is strong, and a new bud will soon take over the work of the old one. We lost the top of a mature Asian pear to ice a couple of years ago, and now you can't tell it ever happened.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2012 at 8:12AM
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Well, it occurred to me that it could have been bitten off and this paved the way for some sort of secondary fungus that caused the black color. The good thing is that since this happened about a week ago there hasn't been any further damage. So I guess the thing to do is to put a fence around the tree along with some deer netting and hope for the best. Urban deer archery is starting to sound like a sport to get into...

    Bookmark   April 26, 2012 at 10:02AM
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Oh, yeah.
Little doubt in my mind that a deer nipped out the top.
Pears aren't high on their list of preferred browse, but they'll eat 'em. I see it all the time here, on pears, mulberries, hickories, you name it.
The blackening is not necessarily fungal/bacterial, just oxidation and enzymatic activity, as you'd see in cut fruit that 'browns' upon exposure to oxygen.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2012 at 10:11AM
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It could be fireblight. My Asian pear trees get it even on branches without flowers. BTW, I can't see your picture.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2012 at 1:57PM
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