Return to the Fruit & Orchards Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

Posted by steve_in_los_osos CA 10a/Sunset 17 (My Page) on
Wed, Apr 24, 13 at 13:08

One limb of a Minnie Royal cherry broke bud strangely this year. I thought perhaps it was die-back, but now the odd buds are actually pushing new growth--which also looks strange:

The leaves are stringy and oddly colored on the margins. Some look like they have been artistically nibbled. I'd hate to lose the limb as it will unbalance the tree, but if this is some kind of virus, I don't want it to spread to the rest of the tree. If it's a fungus or pest, I'd like to know how to treat it.

Next come the plums...Old growth looks fine but new growth is showing yellowing and some leaf malformation:

Dapple Dandy

Santa Rosa

Golden Nectar

Nutritional problems?

These are what the more mature leaves of the ersatz "Satsuma" I posted about
earlier look like:


Finally, I did some apricot bench grafts this year and have not had a lot of success. Only one (FloraGold) has really taken well:


The only other surviving graft is this sad-looking GoldKist:


That was grafted in late February and that is all it has done. The leaves look pretty sad, but it won't die (yet). I guess my question is whether there is a disease involved that could be weathered (like my peach bench grafts with the near-fatal PLC last year which now look great after a lime-sulfur regimen) or whether I should just cut my losses and regraft. I don't have any more GoldKist wood, but I do have some additional Blenheim which is what I have been using on the other bench grafts that failed. I had hoped for 4 different varieties, but at this point I just want to be sure I have four trees that can go in the ground in late Summer. I can always top work later while the trees are small.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 24, 13 at 13:52

Not sure about the cherry. If it's a virus it likely has already spread to all the tree. But it's more likely nothing serious or a bacterial or fungal issue.

Dapple Dandy and plums look like iron deficiency which can be be caused by high pH and too wet/cold.

The graft might be too wet but that's a guess. So that could be related to the plum issue.

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

Thanks. It is certainly on the cool side here--all the time. So maybe that's the way things will look for awhile, or, maybe I will have to boost the nutrition/lower the pH a little considering the climate and the fact that everything in the ground is growing in dune sand.

As to the cherry, maybe I should try a little copper on that limb and see if things straighten out?

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

Any chance you used Roundup (glyphosate, the active ingredient) any time since this past fall?

If so, the trees received a non-lethal dose.
Also if so,they'll grow out of it.

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

It is remotely possible that a small amount of Roundup might have drifted on the breeze and settled on the plants, although I don't think that can explain the cherry on which the phenomenon is precisely confined to a single branch. That's an odd one--and not a very good photo. Maybe I can do better tomorrow.

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

Fruitnut is correct, Steve. We've had a chilly, prolonged, and for you all up in N. Calif, a pretty wet winter and spring. What you're seeing most likely some fungal issues, due to temps being exactly right for that, as well as iron deficiency. We see micronutrient uptake issues here in California due to our higher pH soils in combination with chilly temps and lots of rain. Causes many different plants, including citrus and our stone fruits to become chlorotic. The first micronutrient affected is Manganese, which actually may be what's going on with your plums, then behind that, Iron. Iron is a little less likely due to the abundance of iron in our soils out here, but with the winter and spring we've had, it's probably most of the micros - Manganese, Iron and Zinc. So, just apply fertilizer with micros, and wait for our weather to warm up a bit. And, I would definitely apply some fungicide of some sort, to see if you can get a bit of improvement with your cherry leaves.

Patty S.

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 24, 13 at 23:52

With regards to the cherry, herbicide injury did cross my mind. Jean could very well be right.

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

Why just one affect branch?
As was said, "sub-lethal dose."

As concerns the effects of glyphosate on fruit trees, easy to locate info & images w/ a search using "glyphosate damage tree fruits" -- but omit the quotes.

Typically, such damage follows an herbicide application (ai of glyphosate) made the prior season -- as in fall clean-up.

Her's how it goes:
The tree gets a non-lethal dose in fall;
sends it to the roots (normal route in fall);
then re-mobilizes it in the spring when it sends the sugars upward.

RE: Help with funny looking stone fruit leaves

That search was enlightening, but not for the reason intended. So now the photos I posted above pop up among the others yielded by the search, immortalized for all time whether correctly or no.

Ain't technology wonderful?

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Fruit & Orchards Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here