gray moss growing up tree - Knowledgebase Question

wilmer, Al
Question by lisamike2269
April 18, 2009
Iasked about moss growing on fruit trees earlier.It is growing up the stalk and on the limbs,its seems to be stopping fruit growth.My plum tree hasn't produced fruit,it is five years old,its a santa rosa plum if i remember right,do i need another plant to help it produce.I was told when i bought it that i didn't need another tree to produce fruit..My main question is to try to stop the gray stuff.


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Answer from NGA
April 18, 2009

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That crusty gray growth on your fruit trees is called lichen. It?s made up of both a fungus and an algae living together, and grows on the trunks and branches of trees and shrubs, as well as on rocks. Since lichens can make their own food, they don?t directly hurt the trees and shrubs that they grow on. But, heavy growth can reduce the amount of light available to the tree, and you may not like the appearance of lichen on the branches. For trees and shrubs that lose their leaves in winter, a simple control method is available. A dormant spray of lime sulfur applied n late winter or early spring will effectively control lichens on deciduous plants. But be careful to keep this spray off evergreen plants like rhododendrons?it can damage their leaves.

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