It’s the time of year where homeowners might notice an orange, jelly-like ball on some trees. While this fungus might look like it’s from outer space, it’s not as scary as it seems.
Michael Sundberg, certified arborist with The Davey Tree Expert Company has some advice on how to deal with Cedar Apple Rust.
The disease, cedar apple rust, requires two different species of tree to thrive: a juniper, usually eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana), and an apple, crabapple (Malus or Pyrus spp. depending on source), hawthorn (Crataegus spp.) or quince (Cydonia oblonga).
Some of the signs and symptoms include yellow spots on the top of apple leaves several weeks after the tree has been infected and on some trees, alien-looking orange balls with horns will release spores that infect the newly emerging leaves of apple trees and other species in the same family.
Sundberg suggests cleaning up leaf litter and disposing of it and proper pruning to improve air flow through the canopy can help minimize the disease.
You can always contact a professional arborist like Davey Tree Expert if it becomes a major problem.