The Q&A Archives: Peach tree fungus

Question: I have a peach tree (not sure what kind) but it seems to have a black fungus like substance on the bark and about in the middle of the trunk there are some black/white bubble like things. The tree did produce this year and otherwise seems healthy. And while I have you, what can I do to stop the birds from eating all the peaches? Some years all I have left is just pits attached to the limbs. Thanks

Answer: The best way to keep birds from raiding your fruit tree is to drape birdnetting over the entire canopy and secure it to the trunk (to keep birds from entering from below the canopy and getting caught inside). Drape your tree before the fruit begins to ripen to keep the birds away. The oozing and black discoloration sound like a disease called fungal gummosis. It's difficult to control without a spray program beginning in late winter and continuing every 7-10 days until April. Your local cooperative extension has a publication about gummosis that will walk you through the treatment process. Maricopa County Cooperative Extension, 4341 E. Broadway Road Phoenix, AZ 85040-8807, Phone:602-827-8200.

Good luck with your peach tree!

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