The Q&A Archives: Is My River Birch Diseased?

Question: There is a velvety red growth on the leaves of my River Birch. Should I be concerned?

Answer: Birch is subject to a number of foliar problems. Some such as leaf rust (which somewhat matches your brief description) are not usually serious enough to need treatment but others such as some leaf spot infections are possibly best treated promptly with an appropriate fungicide. In either case, clean up and remove and destroy any fallen leaves now and in the fall to try to limit reinfection. In the meantime I would suggest you consult with your county extension (777-8156) or a professionally trained certified arborist for a specific diagnosis and suggested remedies, if any.

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