When the springtime comes, the azalea makes the most beautiful flowers. And if you love your azalea, you definitely love its blooming. However, the vibrant colors could meet their threat. I am talking about leaf gall on azaleas. These could ruin everything, the leaf tissue, the twigs or the buds. Thus, being prepared with information and solutions will save you. Keep on reading, this article will give you some tips on how to treat azalea leaf gall.
This despicable condition of leaf gall in azalea shrubs is mainly caused by the fungus Exobasidium vaccinii. It is a fungus that infects the growth of your azalea, causing damage to leaves, flowers, buds, or stems. The azalea leaf gall could be light green, white, pink, or brown. However, in most cases, the condition will always turn brown.
With these in mind, there are simple and effective solutions you can turn to in order to save your plant.
The first and most important part would be to rule out other diseases. This part is quite easy as you have the information above. Now you know how the azalea leaf gall manifests and how it looks like.
Before divulging more into it, here are a few tips to consider:
– Always wash your hands before and after working with infected leaves. Thus, you won’t touch any other of your houseplants with the same disease.
– When you discover that 25% of your azalea is infected, consider cutting it back.
– The leaf gall needs wet conditions to develop. Thus, ensure a good drainage to your azaleas.
How To Treat Azalea Leaf Gall Step by Step
1. First, you need to remove infected leaves. You can do this by picking them off by hand, or by using scissors. Either method you choose, it will work. Moreover, you could do this before the leaves turn white. This is the color that indicates the appearance of spores. Thus, it means that the azalea leaf gall is spreading.
2. The infected pieces from your azalea should be destroyed. Each one of them has the fungus. This way, you will prevent the even further spreading. Fumigating the infected bits would be the most efficient method.
3. Just beneath the azaleas, you could lay a new mulch. This is recommended because it will bury the spores and it will prevent the reinfection to appear.
4. If there are more severe cases of azalea leaf gall, you need to apply neem oil at least weekly. With the help of this oil, you can reduce the mold spores once the leaves start showing signs of attack.