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April Showers Bring May Flowers…and Tree Pests!

Spring is here!  Springtime showers are occurring more frequently. Trees have begun to leaf out. Perennials are reappearing. And it’s time to begin planting flowering annuals. Unfortunately, along with all the goodness of spring you also have to deal with the pests that appear as soon as the weather begins to warm up. So when making your list of springtime chores, use these helpful tips to start the season off right by controlling the vermin that are looking to make a home on your flowers, bushes and trees. 

  • When it comes to trees and bushes certain pests can do major damage within a few days. An infestation of gypsy moths can quickly strip a tree, conifer, or ornamental shrub; while eastern tent caterpillars are a common cause of flowering and fruit tree defoliation.  Scale insects suck tree and shrub sap and then excrete a sticky sweet liquid called honeydew. When this gummy substance coats the tops of leaves it interferes with the photosynthesis process. Honeydew is also the primary food source for black fungus, aka sooty mold. It is important to be on the lookout for these and other insects during the late spring/early summer months and treat either with pesticides or in some cases by having the infested branches pruned by a professional tree service.   
  • Many horticulturists, arborists and landscapers agree that in addition to the benefits of an early spring general fertilization, it isn’t a bad idea to apply horticultural oil in order to smother many of these damaging insects and their eggs. Or if you prefer, there are a number of other pesticides, both organic and chemical, that can be applied as a precautionary measure. 
  • If fungal diseases including canker, mildew and rust are a concern, spring is the best time for fungicide applications, as these usually require several treatments in order to be completely effective. Definitely consider fungicide control if you have dogwood, magnolia, or crab apple trees. Lilacs, Indian hawthorn and hydrangeas may also benefit from preventative fungal treatment.   

Spring is also the best time to have your trees inspected for any past winter storm damage. To schedule a complimentary inspection by Out on a Limb Tree Service, please call 864-270-8787 today. Please note: we are continuing to follow all prescribed Covid-19 recommendations, and if you prefer, we can handle the entire inspection process without any in-person contact.

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