Plant diseases

How to eliminate the monilia from the almond tree?

The almond tree is a very decorative and useful fruit tree, but also very sensitive to certain pests and diseases, such as moniliosis. Also known as brown rot, it is caused by three fungi that love humid and warm environments, although unlike the vast majority of species, they can resist low temperatures without problems.

Taking all this into account, it is important to know how to eliminate the monilia from the almond tree, because in addition to this tree it also affects others of special interest to the farmer and his family, such as the peach, cherry or plum.

What is it?

The monilia of the almond tree, moniliasis or brown rot is a fungal disease caused by three ascomycete fungi known by the scientific names Monilinia laxa, Monilinia fructigena and Monilinia fructicola. The first of all, M. laxa, is the most common in Spain, but you also have to pay attention to the trees in case they show symptoms, since all three are just as harmful.

After spending the winter in the form of mycelium in the cankers that have the shoots and stems of the plants, at the end of that season and in spring they produce spores, which will be carried by the wind infecting other flowers, buds and shoots. These will germinate on the stigma of the flowers, and from there the fungus will spread throughout the rest of the plant, causing it to dry out. If the attack is severe, the tree will die.

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms and damage it produces are:

  • Desiccation of flowers, fruits, branches and shoots
  • The dried flowers stay on the tree
  • The fruits turn black and are mummified
  • Growth slowdown
  • A kind of rubber comes out of the cankers on the shoots

How is it removed?

Natural medicine

The monilia of the almond tree cannot be eliminated, because unfortunately today there are still no products that really serve this purpose. Therefore, preventive measures must be taken, such as these:

  • Disinfect the soil before planting, for example using the solarization method.
  • Buy healthy plants, without signs of plague or disease.
  • Do not over water. Remember that very humid environments favor it.
  • Improve the drainage of the land. You have information on this topic here.

Chemical remedies

It can be treated with Tebunconazole, following the indications specified on the package.

Image – Wikimedia/ Jerzy Opioła

I hope it has been useful to you and you can keep your almond trees protected.

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