There can be many reasons why a palm tree becomes unhealthy. Its yellowing, listless fronds might due to improper watering, poor soil drainage or a lack of nutrients in the soil. It can also be something far more serious which requires prompt action. Fusarium wilt is a fungal disease with a subclass (fusarium oxysporum) that can be deadly to a palm tree. So how can you know if your palm tree has become affected by fusarium wilt? And what do you need to do?
Signs and Confirmation
When the fungal infection spreads to a palm tree and begins to overwhelm it, its fronds are the first to be affected. They will lose colour and begin to wilt, even being discarded from the trunk as they die. While these symptoms might not necessarily mean fusarium wilt, the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney suggests a simple test. Remove a potentially infected frond and cut it to expose the vascular bundle in a cross section. Small black patches present in the cross section can indicate fusarium wilt. Contact an arborist for a professional inspection if you're unsure. But what can be done if the tree is in fact infected?
The Necessary Prompt Action
Sadly, once the fusarium oxysporum has taken hold of the tree, the services of a palm tree removalist are needed. The tree cannot be revived, and its prompt removal (including its root clump) is necessary. Any discarded fronds, seeds or debris should also be collected and removed if possible.
Potential Ongoing Consequences
It's vital to remove and dispose of an infected tree as soon as fusarium wilt is detected so that the sick tree does not infect other palms in the vicinity. This means that the infected tree has the ability to cause the eventual necessary removal of any other palm trees on your property, as well as potentially any palm trees on neighbouring land. You are essentially sacrificing an already-dying, impossible-to-save palm tree for the continued health of its remaining counterparts. Even so, it can be prudent to regularly inspect the remaining trees for any symptoms which can indicate fusarium wilt. You should also disinfect your gardening tools to prevent cross contamination.
The loss of a tree in your backyard always leaves an unfamiliar gap in the landscape. However, in the case of fusarium wilt, the gap in the landscape is a necessary one to save your other palm trees.
Welcome to my blog. My name is Emilie. When I turned thirty, I received the most thoughtful gift from my mum: a tropical tree in a pot. I loved it. I would have never imagined buying something like that, but it lit up my home, and it produced yummy fruit. After having such a positive experience with a potted tree, I decided to invest in a few more. Through the years, I have learned how to take care of potted trees, how to plant them outside and how to ensure they are getting the light they need inside. If you want to buy a tree in a pot or if you already have one, explore these posts. They will guide you toward great tree care.