Cherry Blossom Tree - Blackfly and possible shot hole disease?

Discussion in 'Pests, Diseases and Cures' started by Darmok, Jul 17, 2019.

  1. Darmok

    Darmok Apprentice Gardener

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    Hi there. We planted a 5 ft 'Pink Perfection' cherry tree in our garden back in April and, sadly, it is not doing too well. It became overrun with blackfly that has caused the younger leaves to curl (photo 1). We are treating this with a spray (Bug Clear), as well as attempting to manually remove the blackfly and the ants that are 'farming' them. However, we have also noticed that the larger leaves, which were not infested, have holes in them (photo 2). Just wondering if this looks like damage from the insects (or maybe burn damage from the use of the insecticide?) or could this be something like shot hole disease? The poor tree is beginning to feel like a lost cause so any advice would be gratefully received. Thanks!
     

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  2. pete

    pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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    I think your tree will survive, but I also think its a good example of what happens if you wait for ladybirds and hoverflies.:biggrin:
    Nature will sort it out, but the damage can be pretty bad often before that happens.

    Not sure on the holes but I think it's some pest having a chew on the leaves in the early stages of development, right in the growing point, the holes then get bigger as the leaf gets bigger.

    One good spray should be enough to sort it all out, do it thoroughly, and next year at the first signs.
     
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    • Darmok

      Darmok Apprentice Gardener

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      Thanks very much for your response @pete - that sounds encouraging :)

      Yes, we will be more proactive with the spraying next year. They were all hiding on the underside of the leaves and we didn't realise the tree was overrun until it was too late :(

      Do you recommend any particular spray? We have given the tree 3 good applications of Bug Clear in the last 6 weeks but they still keep coming back. Do we maybe need to control the ant population too, as they seem to be very active in 'farming' the blackfly.

      Thanks again for your help!
       
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