Heat Vs. Fire Blight

Ooze Crop

The amber droplet on the withered blossom stem is fire blight bacterium. Fire blight had been hitting us pretty hard, filling my evenings with cutting and breaking off infected branch tips, tossing cluster after cluster of applets.  I even lost some of the trial scionwood grafts that we use for testing new varieties (that’s always hard, as it sets the trial back another year).

But the last two days were over 100 degrees F (38 C) and this evening I saw a marked difference in the trees; a few leaves were singed from the heat, but no new blight strikes.  The old strikes I had missed were dry and crispy, instead of limp and gooey.  I’m glad for this respite as its supposed to cool down a little for foggy mornings burning off to mid-80 degree afternoons, prime fire blight weather.  Hopefully this heat was enough to knock it down for the year.

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2 Responses

  1. Hi Kevin,
    After taking your advice on mulching around the base. Arkansas black finally bloomed in Miami.
    It’ self fertile and early avoiding the rainy season.
    One question, are they suppose to look smooth (bulb area) like the ones pictured above. The bulb area is lumpy. Where can I send you a pic?

    • Its too early to tell; usually insect damage can make it lumpy, but that doesn’t show up until later.

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