Disease on Maples!

I’d noticed two out of three of my Maple trees had been showing some browning to leaf edges. With the ridiculous winds we have endured over since ‘Spring’ arrived I wasn’t really surprised.

I’m normall careful of placement preferring to keep them both in the Gazebo (doors open) which does not take the wind or direct full on sunshine. This year however I found an alternative spot and had been quite happy until …

Over a period of three to five weeks I noticed that almost all the leaves on each tree had started to die off or indeed sit there and just start to go brown from the outer edges inwards; leading me to at first conclude a simple case of windburn. Both by this time were looking pretty darned unsightly so I started to look within the foliage to see if I could spot scale, aphids, or any fungal type disease. I’m hoping it is most certainly not Verticillium albo-atrum or V. dahliae. 

I found absolutely nothing other than a confirmed suspicion that every single leaf on both Maples was the same. Picture below. This was at point of removal. The following images are of both tree leaves, the smaller pertaining to the wee Mountain Maple and the others from ‘Stumpy’ a tree that I have mentioned before and one which I dug up from the garden a few years back. Both re-potted this year.

burnt maple leaf

The following images are taken from both trees leaves and brought inside against a light background to see clearer what I might be dealing with. In direct contrast this image is the other tree. The image above is from Stumpy.

leaf four

Here is a combination of both.

Leaf one

And some further images.

leaf two

leaf five

Now this is over both trees and on every single leaf. I’ve checked and checked and cannot see anything. I have sprayed for any fungal spores but with any potential pathogen it is and can be rather hit and miss and indeed actually more miss than anything.

Being I really do need to know my gut says I have overfed both trees with some windburn thrown in for good measure. I don’t do chemical only organic so really I believe this is actually unlikely. A friend has suggested if I cannot establish cause then send them off to Kew for further analysis; this is actually a very good idea and one I am going to do.

For now then I wait. Both trees are still well alive and I note already producing new leaves from the complete strip the other day. Only time will tell.

Both trees as of fifteen minutes ago.

Mountain Maple strip Stumpy strip

8 thoughts on “Disease on Maples!

  1. Hi Mike,

    I’ve got exactly the same problem here with my Japanese Maple. Not all, but a lot of leaves have turned out the same way as yours. So you are not the only one. I now have cut off all those leaves and hope it is not a disease or something!

    Take care!

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