Bacterial Leaf Scorch - Could It Decimate our City Street Forests?

I don't have an answer to that backed by hard data. I do have a fear of it. I'm seeing a lot fo tree removals in the Knoxville and Baltimore areas due to this disease. My lab tests for it which is the only sure way to differentiate between bacterial and fungal causes - two very different treatment protocols to stave off infection and when treating following infection.



Bacterial leaf Scorch Also Found in American sycamore, London planetree, oaks, maples, sweetgum, and American elm (also dogwood)

Similar symptoms as on oak

o Scorched tissues on leaf margins and between veins first

o Seen most in late Summer/early Autumn

o Sometimes a band of reddish discoloration between scorched portion and green of leaf

o Curled, distorted leaves unlike what is seen in oaks!

o Little leaf drop

o Older leaves hit first

o Branches die and get tip dieback appearances

Treatment Options

o Sterilized pruning and antibiotic injections

o To prevent disease – systemic insecticides applied by injection lasting three years

o One infected the sterilized pruning and antibiotics required

o Increase the trees’ immune response

o Supplemental water during dry/hot periods

o Increase quality of soil environment


Pictures from Cornells' Plant Disease Diagnostics Lab and Purdue University.

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