In honor of October and Halloween, cialis generic this month our theme is everything underground related to landscaping. You often don’t think about what’s going on underground until you see a problem in your plants and trees above ground. By then, the problem is probably pretty severe.
So, what’s so scary about Texas Root Rot or Cotton Root Rot as it’s also known. Here’s what makes it a scary problem:
- It often causes sudden death in susceptible plants in the summer. It can also cause a slow decline in cooler weather.
- You need an expert in Texas Root Rot to identify it.
- You can only replant infested soils with tolerant or immune plants. All others will die.
Texas Root Rot is caused by a fungus called Phymatotrichopsis omnivora (= Phymatotrichum omnivorum). This soil fungus can affect many dicot trees and shrubs. There are almost 200,000 species of plants and trees that are in this group. What is a dicot? It’s a flowering plant with two embryonic seed leaves that appear at germination. It’s probably easier to answer the question of what isn’t a dicot? That would be a monocot. A monocot is a plant like a palm tree.
How do you know if your plant or tree has Texas Root Rot?
It’s not easy. It can look like a lot of other plant problems. Here are some signs and symptoms:
- It causes sudden wilt and death in warm weather. This is because as the roots rot, the plant cannot get enough water.
- The dead leaves don’t fall of the plant or tree. They stay attached.
- The infected roots must be examined under a microscope to get a positive identification of the fungus.
- Mature trees can take awhile to show signs of declining from Texas Root Rot. They may have been infected for some time before starting to wilt.
You find Texas Root rot in the Southwest and in Mexico. You can notice large amounts of cotton fields that have dead cotton plants when it’s in the soil of growing cotton. This is why it’s also called Cotton Rot. Imagine the huge financial loss for cotton farmers when they have this rot.
The most frightening thing about Texas Root rot is that you can’t tell that it’s in the soil until you plant something. It dies. And, you get the roots examined. You may go through several plants/trees before realizing that you have Texas Root Rot. There are no preventative measures you can take.
Here are some of the plants that are considered to be extremely susceptible to Texas Root Rot:
- Fruit and nut trees
- Ash, cottonwood, elms, figs, sycamore, bottle tree, silk oak, pepper tree and African sumac
- Many shrubs including pomegranate, xylosma, cassia, Mexican bird of paradise, oleander, and roses
- Annuals usually escape disease since they are in the ground such a short time
Plants and trees that are immune or very tolerant of Texas Root Rot:
- Mesquites, palo verde, Atriplex, hackberry, jojoba
- All monocots, such as palms, yuccas and grasses
- Citrus, eucalyptus, tamarisk, and pine are considered tolerant but cases of this rot have been found in these plants
You can find all the plants and trees that are tolerant or immune to Texas Root Rot here.
If you think you might have Texas Root Rot contact us for more information at (520) 370-5697 or the University of Arizona Extension Center for help.
Deborah Munoz-Chacon, Certified Arborist