The Q&A Archives: Red "blisters" On New Growth Of Eugenia Myrtlfolia

Question: Two weeks ago I purchased 3-5gallon Eugenia myrtifolia 'Monterey Bay' from Ron's Nursery in Arroyo Grande, CA. They came in Monrovia Nursery pots with the Monrovia tag. I planted two in wine 1/2 barrels on the patio in a blend of Canadian Peat Moss, #20 washed sand, 0-10-10 fertilizer and dolomite. Yesterday, I noticed one plant has red "blisters" on a lot of the new growth. The other plant seems to be free of disease. What is the cause and cure?
Thank you.

Answer: The red blisters are called galls and can be caused by a fungal disease or by the feeding of tiny little insects called mites. Eugenia is more susceptible to mite damage than to fungal diseases. The swollen and discolored plant tissues are a response to chemicals injected while the mites were feeding. It's likely that these pests have already left the area and all that remains is evidence of their feeding. The best control strategy is to remove the damaged plant parts and dispose of them. Prune the affected plant to remove the damaged growth and periodically check your other shrubs to make sure they're not affected.

Best wishes with your garden!

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