How to Prevent Black Knot from Killing Your Trees

By: albertaarb - May 20, 2016

black knot

Over the past several years, black knot fungus has devastated trees across the province. This fungus spreads quickly, destroying trees you’ve cared for and nourished for years. Read on to learn more about black knot fungus and what you can do to prevent it from infecting your trees.

What Is Black Knot Fungus?

Black knot fungus is a type of fungal disease that affects plum and cherry trees. Sometimes it can infect apricot trees, too.

You can tell your tree is infected with black knot fungus because of the thick black growths on its branches that look like coal. If you don’t treat it properly, it can kill your trees.

How Do Trees Become Infected with Black Knot Fungus?

Like other fungi, black knot fungus spreads when its spores are carried by the wind. A fungal spore is a reproductive cell that enables fungi to create the next generation of the organism.

When it rains, the fungus on infected trees opens up. It releases spores into the air. If a spore lands on a plum or cherry tree with an open wound, it will infect the tree and begin to grow.

How Do I Know My Tree Is Infected?

It can take years for black knot fungus to appear. A tree can appear healthy for quite some time while the fungus is growing.

By the time you see black knots on branches, the infection is serious. That’s why it’s important to examine your plum and cherry trees carefully and frequently for signs of black knot fungus.

What Can I Do to Prevent Black Knot Fungus?

Experts recommend that we keep trees healthy by pruning them properly so the trees' canopy has adequate ventilation.

Once black knot fungus has struck, you have to remove the infected parts of the tree. Remember to clean your equipment thoroughly after use so you don’t infect other trees.

Immediately after you remove the knots, you have to remove them from the site. If you don’t have a place to discard them, then bury them or burn them. What happens if you leave the infected wood lying around? The fungus on it can still release spores up to four months later.

Trust a Tree Care Expert to Deal with Black Knot Fungus

Removing black knot fungus completely can be difficult to do on your own, especially if you’ve never done it before. Trained tree care professionals can help. They know how to remove black knot fungus so it no longer threatens your trees.

At Alberta Arborists, we've helped countless people get rid of trees safely and efficiently, and we can help you, too. Our highly experienced arborists are trained to deal with any tree removal in any location without risking damage to your property.

Click here to contact us or call the number at the top of the page for a free, no-obligation estimate of your job.

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