Identifying and Treating Flowering Quince Diseases
Flowering quince trees produce golden, pear-shaped fruits throughout much of the year. They are hardy trees that are adept at growing in many different climates, and create beautiful flowers of red, white or orange. However, flowering quince disease are a serious concern for gardeners wishing to feature this south Asian tree. Like all warm-climate trees, flowering quince is susceptible to a variety of fungal diseases and parasitic infections, many of which pose a serious threat.
Common Flowering Quince Diseases Caused by Fungi
Fungus-related diseases are among the most common afflicting flowering quince trees. While there are a variety of fungi that may damage your flowering quince, some of the most common diseases are rust and black spot.
Rust disease is named for the brown-red fungal growths that develop on the leaves, fruit and branches of trees. The fungi causes large growths that restrict the nutrient supply to the tree, causing lasting damage.
Black spot is a fungal disease that poses a serious concern for quince owners. This fungus causes circular spots to develop on the leaves of the quince tree. If left untreated, these spots grow and spread to other parts of the tree. Left unattended, these spots will develop into spore packs that spread fungal spores to many trees in the vicinity. Without proper care and treatment, black spot may quickly engulf an entire garden or area.
Both of these fungal diseases may be treated with one of a variety of fungicidal sprays. Fungicides are available at outdoor centers and gardening equipment stores. However, it is important to exercise caution when spraying plants with fungicide. Fungicides are powerful chemical poisons that may cause harm to other plants, as well as people and animals, if used incorrectly or excessively.
Common Flowering Quince Parasite Concerns
In addition to diseases and fungi, flowering quince trees are often attacked by parasitic insects. These insects draw nutrients from the tree itself, sapping its strength and weakening the tree. Without prompt treatment, many parasitic infestations can kill or severely injure a flowering quince tree.
Codling moths attack fruit-bearing trees of all types. The caterpillars feed on the quince fruit. The situation is similar with the Oriental fruit moth. In both of these cases, larvae burrow into the developing fruits and feed off of the pulp. Although these parasites will not cause significant damage to the tree itself, they effectively ruin the fruit that the tree produces.
Both of these moth larvae may be controlled with insecticides like diazinon or phosmet. However, like pesticides, insecticides are dangerous chemicals that should be used cautiously and only when appropriate.
Aphids may also attack quince trees. In these situations, the aphids feed on the budding branches and sprouts of the tree. Aphids cause significantly more structural damage to a flowering quince tree than moth larvae do. Again, insecticides may be effective at controlling and reducing the aphid population in and around your quince tree.
Monitor your quince tree carefully to ensure that it does not fall victim to a fungal infection or a parasitic infestation. If you suspect any damage to your tree, visit a gardening center for more information about the appropriate fungicides and insecticides to treat your quince.