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Tree death and decay is not uncommon in the United States of America. While some diseases are more common amongst yard trees and trees planted for landscaping reasons, other diseases plague the density of the forest and damage the supply of natural resources out society depends on.

There are over 30 common diseases that can affect trees, showing up primarily in hardwoods and conifers. As a landscaper, preservationist, or even homeowner, it's useful to be able to identify these diseases on sight and whether you should contact an emergency tree service. These diseases range from parasites to genetic conditions and widely vary in severity.

Listed below are some of the most common diseases that affect trees. If you'd like to learn more about these diseases, contact your local affordable tree service in Snellville and ask for more information.

Phytophthora Root and Crown Rot

This disease is most common in younger trees without a fully developed root system. Symptoms may indicate rot include discoloration, early loss of foliage, and an overall unhealthy or malnourished appearance. This condition normally will not immediately kill the tree, and can last for many years before the tree perishes.

If you're planting a new tree and you want to prevent phytophthora rot, make sure your soil can drain properly. Warm soil that retains moisture makes a reliable breeding ground for this and other bacterial diseases.

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Sooty Mold Fungus

While this type of fungus isn’t necessarily harmful to the plant, it can be a nuisance to homeowners, as it can spread to cover cars and stain nearby structures. It can be identified on the leaves of plants that attract sucking insects. The mold uses the secretions of these insects as food and spreads in a black, spotty fashion.

If you notice this kind of mold growing close to your home, your best bet is to remove the plant. Local tree services in Snellville can help you with this process.


This term refers to the symptoms of a tree with leaves that have been infected by fungus. Anthracnose leaves will have blotches of rotten or dead areas, often indicated by small holes. Many different kinds of fungus can cause these symptoms.

While anthracnose isn't always lethal, it can affect a tree's growth and give it a crooked or abnormal appearance. It can be lethal, however, if the fungi spreads from the trees' leaves to its twigs and branches.

Fire Blight

Despite its dramatic name, fire blight simply indicates a bacterial infection in trees. Symptoms of fire blight include a shriveled or burned appearance of leaves, as well as twig death. This disease can be lethal to a tree as it can destroy the limbs and trunk of a tree.

If you'd like to know more about common diseases, or even identify something you may think is a tree disease, contact your local tree care service in Snellville for more information.