Disease on peach leaves

eboone_gwJuly 31, 2013

In the past week I have noted that one of my peach trees has developed diseased-looking leaves - the leaves are only in one section ( about 1/4 ) of the tree so far, they get brown spots, then start to yellow, and some have dropped off. When I collected these from the tree, they kind of just fell off into my hand when picking them. I have never seen this before in my little orchard. I do have a mild case of peach scab on many of the peaches in this tree, but I am not aware that it hits leaves. I have been spraying the tree regularly through the season - Immunox every two weeks until several days ago, when it got treated with Monterrey Fungus Fighter (first year trying that). This is an unknown white peach that typically ripens about mid-August, and it tends to get brown rot pretty bad. We have had a very moist, humid summer so far here, more rain that usual.

Any ideas what this is?


This post was edited by eboone on Wed, Jul 31, 13 at 8:44

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looks like shothole fungus to me. winter dormant spraying is key to peaches. peaches have lots of issues....

    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 10:30AM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

That is usually bacterial spot. The sprays you are using is not going to help, you need to do dormant copper sprays. Bacterial spot is one of the biggest disease problems for peaches in the east.


    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 1:40PM
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Thanks Scott

I was afraid of that. I have never seen this on my peaches leaves before.

So, at this point from my reading here is what I have found: At present there is nothing I can do. Once the tree goes dormant, I would spray with copper, and again before it breaks dormancy in the spring. Also in the spring before it breaks dormancy, prune out all of the twigs that look to be infected.

Would you cut down the tree to prevent it from getting into the other two mature peach trees at this site (Hale Haven and Encore, both not resistant to bac spot) and the several new peach (Blushingstar, Garnet Beauty, and PF 5b, which should have more resistance to bac spot), nectarine (Hardired, also reported to have some resistance) and japanese plums I planted this year, assuming that there is no sign of it on them yet - or is it just inevitable that it will spread, and I just focus on keeping it suppressed the best I can?

    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 3:41PM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Ed, I would say give it another years chance except I notice you say it also gets brown rot badly. Sounds like double trouble there and time to go. Bacterial spot can spread, I had a couple susceptible varieties that spread it to my whole orchard and I had a big mess with it for several years. Part of my problem is I did not know what it was or how to treat it.


    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 10:12PM
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Well, tonight I see a few leaves on the other 2 mature trees that look the same. Don't see it on any of the new trees, which are 40-50 yards away. I have about 2-3 weeks until the harvest on the Hale Haven and unknown white, and about 5+ weeks until Encore is done. Since there is nothing to do now for the bac spot, I will await the harvest, see how bad the infection gets, see how my first year with the Monterrey Fungus Fighter does with the brown rot (picked about 2/3 of my Raritan Rose tonight, about a half bushel of usable fruit - it is at a different property, and no brown rot to be seen despite the rain and humidity most of the summer!!)

How well does the copper spray work for preventing an outbreak next year on trees that were infected this year? Or is it terminal?

I assume all my new stone fruit trees should get the dormant copper sprays this off season even if there is no sign of infection on them, given the infection nearby?

    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 10:48PM
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olpea(zone 6 KS)

I have a couple trees in my backyard that are very susc. to bac. spot. One tree gets it so bad it used to defoliate a large part of the tree. The fruit would be so scarred from bac. spot it would crack.

Several years ago I started using Flameout (oxytetracycline) which eliminated the problem. Nevertheless, I eventually I plan to pull out these two trees. It's a pain to spray them with an antibiotic.

I'm not sure you can completely eliminate bac. spot from your orchard, so cutting your tree down probably won't eradicate it. It may reduce the inoculum though. I've read that a very heavy inoculum of bac. spot can overwhelm the defenses of resistant cultivars, which Scott alluded to.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 11:45PM
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