The Q&A Archives: Fruit Trees/cedar Trees

Question: I've heard that cedar trees can harm the production of apple trees. Is this true? How far apart should the two types of trees be from each other.

Answer: The cedar trees (Eastern red cedar or Juniperus virginiana and many cultivars of juniper) in themselves do not harm the apple trees, but they may serve as the alternate host for cedar-apple rust, a fungus. While it may be partially effective to remove any "nearby" junipers, the actual distance is usually somewhat academic since the fungus can be brought in on the wind. It is generally better to use rust resistant apple varieties whenever possible, and to use an appropriate fungicide on the apples if necessary. An additional control measure would be to physically remove any galls that might appear on nearby junipers. They look for all the world like orange jelly fish and appear in the spring.

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