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Fig Tree Diseases – Even if you can’t make a decent Newton without them, growing figs in your backyard is not for the faint-hearted. Figs are often plagued by a variety of fungal diseases, as well as the occasional bacterium or virus, which may be both gratifying and distressing.
Knowing how to identify fig tree illnesses will assist you in staying one step ahead of a garden catastrophe in the future. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common fig tree diseases that these fruit trees are prone to.
The Most Serious Fungal Diseases of Fig Trees
Pathogens that cause issues with fig trees include fungus, which is the most common. Fungi-caused fig disease problems may damage practically any part of the plant, including the fruits, leaves, and interior tissues, according to the USDA. As soon as certain fungal diseases are fully established, there is little that can be done to reverse the situation. Always maintain proper cleanliness and be mindful of how much water you are applying to your fig tree to lessen favorable circumstances for fungal germination.
Pink Blight: Easily the most eye-catching of the major fig problems, pink blight affects the inside of overgrown figs and manifests itself as a pink-to-white, velvety covering on sickly or dead branches. It is also the most difficult to diagnose. If left untreated, the fungus may spread from these dead parts into healthy ones, eventually killing the tree as a whole. Remove sick tissues and dispose of them as soon as possible, and then open up the interior of your fig by thinning off up to a third of the smaller growth, which will allow for ample air circulation to circulate.
Fig Rust: The fiddle-head fungus causes the leaves of the fig tree to become yellow-brown and fall off in the late summer or early autumn. When they are viewed closely, a large number of rust-colored dots may be seen on the underside of the leaves. Perennial infections from fig rust, although not usually lethal, may cause your plant to become weakened. While fig rust may be destroyed by neem oil in the early stages of infection, clearing fallen debris can frequently prevent fig rust from taking hold.
Leaf Blight: This is another kind of fungus that infects leaves. It forms patches that start off yellow and become water-soaked as the infection progresses. During the progression of the illness, the water-soaked regions expand and dry out, leaving a papery surface behind them. Infected leaves may have thin holes torn out of them, or the whole leaf may turn dark and die, with a web-like mat of fungus bodies adhering to the underside of the leaf. Sanitation is the sole means of controlling the disease; remove contaminated leaves as soon as they appear and keep infected material off the ground.
Other Fig Tree Diseases
Despite the fact that fungal infections are by far the most common cause of fig tree diseases, other pathogens play an important role as well. Troublesome fig issues, including fig mosaic, fruit souring, and root knot nematodes, may be painful for a fig grower to deal with since they are so difficult to handle.
Fruit Souring: When figs are picked while still on the tree, they become sour due to a variety of yeasts that are thought to be introduced by vinegar flies or dried fruit beetles. As figs begin to ripen, they may leak or develop bubbles, emitting a sour scent that resembles that of fermentation. However, unless you grow fig varieties that have closed ostioles, such as Celeste, Texas Everbearing, or Alma, your fruit will be at danger each season unless you use insecticides to keep insects away.
Fig Mosaic: It is believed that the virus that causes fig mosaic is transmitted by the eriophyid mite Aceria fici and spread by cuts. There are yellow dots that emerge on the leaves of infected trees, albeit they may not occur on every leaf and they are not uniformly distributed. As the season progresses, these spots will develop rust-colored bands on their surfaces. Fruits may be spotted, stunted, or fall from the tree too soon. Unfortunately, there is no treatment for fig mosaic once it has shown itself on your plant; it should be killed to prevent the disease from spreading further.
Root Knot Nematodes: These extremely widespread, unseen roundworms cause harm to plants that may be difficult to identify since they sometimes imitate other root diseases in their appearance. Those trees that have been infected with root knot nematodes display a steady decline, have persistently poor health, and are less energetic when it comes to growing leaves and fruits. The fig will die if its roots are not dug out and its galls are not removed before the fig’s root system is completely blocked. Root knot nematodes are very difficult or impossible to destroy because they shield themselves with the plant’s own tissues and hide in the soil.
It is important to keep a close watch on your fig to avoid any disease issues in the future.