please help with tree flies

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  #1  
Old 07-04-03, 07:20 AM
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please help with tree flies

i have an ornamental plum tree that recently developed round, raised black dots that are approx. 1/8" in diameter on the underside of the branches. recently i've seen some black flies swarming around the tree.

do i have a fungus problem and a fly problem or are the flies hatching out of the black dots? how do i treat?

thanks for the advice.
 
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  #2  
Old 07-04-03, 09:25 AM
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There are many different plums.

Mexican Plum (P. mexicana)

Cherry Plum (P .cerasifera)

Chickasaw Plum (P. angustifolia)

American Plum (P. americana)

PLUM, PURPLE-LEAVED Prunus cerasifera Nigra

and so on.


I have been unable to find anything that discusses 1/8" black spots on the underside of the leaves of plums in general Some thoughts are aphids that produce honeydew and sometimes mold grows on it, but generally ants are seen on the trees tending to the aphids. What do the flies look like? House flies? Gnats?

Hope this helps.
 
  #3  
Old 07-04-03, 10:33 AM
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Smile Where is the problem?

Hi phillydave Welcome to the DIY Garden Forum

Fruit tree problems. To think, I once believed them to have less problems than say a Tomato plant.

A few questions first.
What do you spray on your tree, starting from late Winter through late Fall?

Trees can and often do have, more than 1 problem at a time.
Up in the Pest Management Sticky we have it set up to identify, good bug/ bad bug & how to control the pest or pests. Take a look.

We have a stella Cherry & this is it's 2nd year inground. Early this spring when the Aphids wore longjohns, we had large Black ants moving up & down the tree.

Too early I thought for Aphids , but all those Ants. I got my Pocket Loupe & went hunting for what was drawing all the Ants. What I found will surprise you, I found small raised bright red blisters on the bottom of the leaf stems.

I now know this is normal & not to worry about it, seems the tree makes these nectar bags to feed the ants. Nature is a I'll scratch your back if you, & seldom does a plant give, if it does not recieve something back.

The ant's will bite me if I mess with Aphids or these nectar bags, the Ants could be protecting the tree from something so their paid in necter.

Flies seem to indicate rot or magots to us. Yet this fly and the raised black dots may be 2 different things. Do you see a connection? Like Chris said, when we see Ants we think Aphids, Ants come to tend & milk the Aphids.

This is a study like all pest problems. You must first identify the real pest & then treat it, then the secondary problems will resolve themselves. EG. Kill the Aphids & the Ants leave.

Are you getting a lot of rain? what zone are you in? (See: Useful Garden Links) We have avaraged 6 inches of rain per month for the last 4 months & I have seen fungus problems, not seen in the past 5 years of droughts.
 
  #4  
Old 07-04-03, 05:44 PM
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more info.

thanks for the responses. here's some more info:

i'm not sure what type of tree since i did not plant but i do have purple leaves and i get small shiny fruit on it.

i have small ants in the area but not on the tree as far as i can tell.

the dots are raised and hollow (at least the samples i looked at) on the underside of the branches.

flies look like house flies.

i have sprayed nothing on my tree.

i'm in philly so we have gotten a ton of rain.

any other thoughts? if i were to fan spray the tree with some insecticide at a very low dilution, would that help? i don't eat the fruit.
 
  #5  
Old 07-04-03, 09:55 PM
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Use the right meds the first time.

At this point, a shot of the wrong spray may be just a waste of time & money.

Some bugs bore into trees & hatch out leaving a hole. In any case it may be a good idea to take a sample small branch. Call your County Agent, & ask to have him come out, or you bring in the sample. They get paid to help Homeowners also they have a lab & do find the problems.

One reason I asked about your spray routine was to see if you were using a Dorment Oil Spray, followed by a lime sulfer spray, 1 month later. This is done 6 to 8 weeks before the tree leaves out.

These 2 sprays in very early Spring, will kill out many pest eggs & Fungus spores hideing in the bark, before the warm Spring sun hatches them out.

Is the rest of the tree affected in any other way? How much of the tree is affected with this problem?

I don't mean to sound vauge, it's just that there are so many bugs to learn & Fungus + desiese on Trees. You will save time at this point, by having a Pro look at the sample. The wet weather has caused untold damage to the South Easts Fruit trees, this season so far.
 
  #6  
Old 07-15-03, 04:34 PM
art nunez
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tree flies

phillydave,
If your tree looks healthy and doesn't seem to be suffering, I wouldn't worry about those flies. they will probably disappear.

Art
 
  #7  
Old 07-16-03, 10:21 AM
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Raised black dots.

Art one of the things Dave is worried most about is: i have an ornamental plum tree that recently developed round, raised black dots that are approx. 1/8" in diameter on the underside of the branches.

Does anything about the raised black dots ring a bell with you?
 
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