The Q&A Archives: Cherry Plum Tree -

Question: The Landscaper who planted this tree called it a Cherry Plum Tree. The leaves are reddish plum in color. I first noticed in July that the leaves looked eaten - very lacy but there was not indication of any bug. I used a topical insecticide. When there was no improvement after a couple of weeks I used an insecticide that you dissolve and soak in the soil around the tree. You can only use this insecticide once a year. The new growth continued to be eaten. I'm not sure if this is caused by an insect or if a disease would cause this. I'm afraid I am going to lose this tree. HELP

Answer: Based on your description I am not able to tell you specifically what has happened, however I suspect based on the timing that the damage began that it is due to Japanese beetles eating the foliage. At this time of year there is no point to trying to control the damage as the foliage has done its job for the season already and will be falling soon. Also, you need to identify the problem before trying to treat it. You might want to consult with your local county extension to try to obtain a specific identification of the problem and based on knowing that, determine how to proceed for next year. If it is a problem that warrants a chemical control, they will have the most up to date information on what to use and how/when is best to apply it. Good luck with your tree!

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