Black Sooty Mould (Soot) On Citrus Tree Leaves

The Black Sooty Mold (Soot) on Citrus Tree Leaves is a very common problem that affects all citrus species. The fungus produces spores which are carried by wind or rain droplets and germinate when they land on the leaf surface. Once established, it grows rapidly and eventually overgrows itself into a thick layer of black sooty mold.

The black sooty mold causes the affected area to become discolored and rough looking. It may even cause the leaves to fall off. There are several ways that you can treat your citrus trees with regard to this problem. You could spray the infected areas with bleach, or you could apply a fungicide such as fusarium oxysporum extract (FOX).

Both methods will kill the fungus but not necessarily eliminate any damage caused by it.

There are many other products available on the market that claim to treat black soty mold on citrus trees. These include sulfuric acid, sodium hypochlorite, potassium permanganate and others. Some of these products have been tested and found effective against black soty mold but most haven’t. The best way to determine if a product works is to test it yourself before using it on your trees.

How Do I Remove Black Sooty Mold From My Trees?

The general rule when it comes to removing black sooty mold from your trees is that you can remove it by hand as soon as you see it. The quicker you act, the better chance you have of completely getting rid of it. Use a soft cloth or your bare hands to gently wipe away the mold from the infected areas. You may need to use a little water to assist you but avoid getting any water on the healthy surrounding tissue. Once you have removed as much of it as you can, apply a fungicide or a bleach solution to the infected areas.

This process may need to be repeated a few times before the mold is completely gone but don’t get discouraged. Eventually, if you are persistent, you will win the battle. As a preventative measure you can spray your trees with a solution of 1 part chlorine bleach to 5 parts water (10% solution) once or twice a month. This will help keep the mold from growing but it will not remove it if it does appear.

It is also important to keep the area around the tree free of moisture.

How Do I Get Rid Of Sooty Mold On My Trees?

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When it comes to Sooty Mold on your trees there are a few important things that you should know about before you start trying to treat them in any way. First of all, there are actually two different types of Sooty Mold that can grow on your trees, and while they are both black in color they are two completely different types of mold. One is actually a good mold that helps your trees and the other is a type of mold that attacks and kills plant life, like the trees in your yard. Both of them start out as small black spots on the leaves of your trees that grow and spread if not treated, but it’s important to know which type you are dealing with before you start trying to get rid of them.

Sources & references used in this article:

Capnodium citri: the sooty mold fungi comprising the taxon concept by DR Reynolds – Mycopathologia, 1999 – Springer

A survey on citrus sooty mold fungi in Gilan Province, Iran. by SA Khodaparast – Rostaniha, 2006 – cabdirect.org

The spiders of a citrus grove in israel and their role as biocontrol agents ofCeroplastes floridensis [Homoptera: Coccidae] by F Mansour, WH Whitecomb – Entomophaga, 1986 – Springer

Classical biological control of Asian citrus psylla by MA Hoy, R Nguyen, A Jeyaprakash – Citrus Industry, 2001 – swfrec.ifas.ufl.edu

Development of a two-band spectral imaging system for real-time citrus canker detection by J Qin, TF Burks, X Zhao, N Niphadkar… – Journal of Food …, 2012 – Elsevier

Asian citrus psyllid by EE Grafton-Cardwell – 2006 – books.google.com

Fungal phyllosphere communities are altered by indirect interactions among trophic levels by JL Perez, JV French, KR Summy, AD Baines, CR Little – Microbial ecology, 2009 – Springer

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