Fusarium Wilt

Fusarium wilt is caused by Fusarium oxysporum, a soil-born fungus, causing fungal spores to enter plants and trees through the roots. It then moves up the plant with water into stems and leaves, and gradually closes up water-connecting tissue with the gummy substance it produces. These spores can remain in the soil for many years, even after the plants have died.

Symptoms include yellowing and stunting of plants. First the lower leaves turn yellow, wilt and die. The upper leaves turn yellow and finally the entire plant dies. A major killer of expensive palm trees, fusarium wilt will cause a general decline in the tree’s vigor, frond wilting and loss of luster, and finally kill the palm.

Management of fusarium wilt depends on rapid and accurate diagnosis. General cultural practices apply, such as cleaning up and destruction of infected plants and debris as quickly as possible. Using high levels of hygiene in all horticultural practices relating to palms is very important. It is important to use hand saws rather than chain saws when removing fronds because chain saws cannot be sterilized.

Ensure adequate water and a good supply of nutrients to palms. Potassium is often important in their nutrition and disease resistance.

Please call or email City Arborist Tree Care to discuss your tree’s disease and pest control needs.