As with all pesticides, read and follow all label directions and precautions. Experts advise that you keep your tree healthy, with good cultural practices, as a first line of defense against problems with sycamore trees. They become active in the spring at about the same time as leaves begin to develop. Care should be taken to disinfect pruning shears in rubbing alcohol or 10% bleach solution after each pruning cut. Sign up for our newsletter. However, it is possible that you experience problems with sycamore trees. Sycamore trees are vulnerable to diseases and insect pests, just like almost every variety of tree you can plant. Let’s take a look at some of the most common problems these sturdy shade trees face. When spraying is feasible and necessary, several fungicides (myclobutanil*, thiophanate methyl*, propiconazole, chlorothalonil, sulfur, copper fungicides, and horticultural oil) are available. Adults survive the winter under peeling bark of the sycamore tree. Signs and Symptoms of Sycamore Anthracnose Sycamore anthracnose is a disfiguring disease of sycamore and plane trees (Platanus sp.) However, even well placed, irrigated, and fertilized sycamore trees can get some pests and diseases. The symptom you see most frequently is crinkling and browning of the leaves. X. fastidiosa from elm does not infect sycamore or vice versa. For information on cultural practices that favor the growth of healthy sycamores, see HGIC 1022, Sycamore. The sycamore is a massive tree, unsuitable for most home landscapes. If the tree is small enough, spraying with a strong stream of water can control a light infestation. of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Clemson UniversityClyde S. Gorsuch, PhD, Emeritus Faculty, Entomology, Clemson University, Joey Williamson, PhD, HGIC Horticulture Extension Agent, Clemson University. Providing irrigation, mulch and fertilizer to an infected tree can extend the life of the tree. This disease can kill twig tips, expanding to buds, new shoots, and leaves. They have piercing/sucking mouthparts that they use to remove sap from the leaves. Sign up to get all the latest gardening tips! For valuable trees, certified arborists can perform root flare injections using thiabendazole (Arbortect Macro-Infusion Fungicide), which may aid in tree protection for three years. Some of the most common are: Sycamore Anthracnose – This sycamore disease results in extensive defoliation, shoot dieback, and twig death. Use pesticides only according to the directions on the label. *Note: Powdery mildew fungi can develop resistance to these fungicides if they are applied exclusively. In a few days, the nymphs (immature stage) hatch. Extended periods of cold spring weather slow growth of the sycamore tree. It has a pyramidal form in youth but develops a spreading, rounded and irregular crown with age. One of the most common sycamore tree pests is the sycamore lace bug that gets its name from the lacy pattern on the adult’s wings, head, and chest. It is often impractical to spray large trees. Pyramidal in youth, it develops a spreading rounded or irregular crown with age, supported by a few very large diameter branches. If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at hgic@clemson.edu or 1-888-656-9988. With time, symptoms may appear on other branches of the tree. ‘Bloodgood,’ ‘Columbia’ and ‘Liberty’ (London plane tree cultivars) are moderately resistant to anthracnose. Prevention & Treatment: The sycamore lace bug has several natural enemies, including assassin bugs, minute pirate bugs, lacewings, spiders and predaceous mites. This tree disease will occur on well-established plantings and those already under stress. Throughout Iowa, the major disadvantage of sycamore as a landscape tree is the fungal disease, anthracnose. Join our mailing list to receive the latest updates from HGIC. Often confused with frost damage, signs of … Insecticides are also available. Disease cycle. The disease stunts new growth as well. These can range from sycamore tree pests to sycamore tree diseases. Sycamore decline, sometimes called dieback, has been reported since the 1950’s across the Southen United States. Prevention & Treatment: There is no way to prevent BLS, but if affected limbs are pruned out early in the infection and well below the scorched leaves, a cure may be possible. As a result, younger leaves at the ends of sycamore branches may appear healthy. Infected leaves distort, yellow and fall. Some species of the tree grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 to 10. Where the weather has been continuously hot, sooty bark will cause partial or total crown wilting which can eventually be fatal. If you know the name of the tree pest or disease affecting your trees, see the Forestry Commission guidance giving detailed information on specific tree pests or diseasesknown to be present in the UK. For small trees, spring applications of chlorothalonil, thiophanate-methyl or copper fungicides may protect the tree from the disease. See the information on this disease in the "Common Plant Diseases" section. If insecticide application becomes necessary and is feasible, acephate (sprays) and imidacloprid (soil drench) are recommended for homeowner use. Sycamore anthracnose is a fungal disease that can cause leaf drop, twig dieback, cankers and the sudden death of more than 90% of a tree’s new shoot growth. Other sycamores may become weedy from their seeds, or have disease problems. The resulting tree decline may require removal of the infected tree. Sycamore trees are highly susceptible to a fungal disease called anthracnose. However, it is not impervious to disease. Each year we receive a number of calls from people concerned that sycamores appear to be dying. The cream- to olive-colored exfoliating … Initially, leaves on only one or a few branches may be affected. Follow all directions, precautions and restrictions that are listed. You can also find out about those that pose a potential risk to the UK but are not present yet. This disease is common on plants growing in shady areas with high humidity. The fungus survives the winter on fallen leaves and twigs as well as on cankers present on twigs that remain on the tree. If you give your trees sufficient water and fertilizer, you are unlikely to see this sycamore tree disease. Sycamore Anthracnose (fungus – Gnomonia plantani): Sometimes called blight and scorch. It can be very difficult to treat, but it doesn’t typically kill mature, established trees. The species most commonly affected by the disease are Norway maple (Acer platanoides), silver maple (Acer saccharinum), and sycamore maple (Acer pseudoplatanus). Anthracnose (Leaf & Twig Blight): Anthracnose is the most serious disease of American sycamore, but generally causes only minor damage to the London plane tree. A fungal disease, sycamore anthracnose typically affects the young shoots and leaves of a tree. These branches should be spaced two to four feet apart along the trunk to develop a strong structure. It may also be affected by horse chestnut scale insect, which appears as fluffy white spots on the trunk and branches during the summer. Marjan Kluepfel, Former HGIC Horticulture Information Specialist, Clemson UniversityJanet McLeod Scott, Former Horticulture Information Specialist, Clemson UniversityJames H. Blake, EdD, Extension Associate/Adjunct Professor, Dept. The fungi overwinter in dead twigs and fallen leaves. 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