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Nectria Twig Blight

Nectria cinnabarina

Nectria twig blight, caused by Nectria cinnabarina, is occasionally a problem on strains of Rome in the southeastern United States. Nectria gallegnia causes a canker but is rarely observed in the Southeast.

Symptoms

Symptoms somewhat resemble fire blight and are often confused with it. Infections originate in fruit pedicel scars or broken pedicels on last year's cluster bases and result in cankers, which girdle the stem and cause the affected shoot to die. Cankers are orange-brown. Leaves often remain attached to dead shoots.

Nectria cankers

Nectria cankers

Disease Cycle

The fungus survives in small cankers in the tree. New infections arise on pedicle scars or broken pedicles during the fall and spring, following dispersal of spores by rainfall to these sites.

Control

There are no effective chemical controls. Infected shoots should be cut out to reduce the inoculum and to remove dead wood that can be a host for summer rot fungi.

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Format updated March 29, 2011