The hourglass sands of October appear to be rushing out as we look to November and preparing for winter. We had our first frost in North Alabama. Sourwoods and blackgums are expressing their early fall colors. It is time to ship all you can and jam, pack and cover the rest. It is a busy time putting the plants down for the winter and beginning to prepare for a big rush of trade shows and checking your “ToDo’s” for preparing for winter shipping and spring planting. My constant reminder to you and myself is to write all your activities down so next years planning will be easier and your surprises fewer. You will eventually have a monthly check list of your ToDo’s that will save you from grabbing the jug of Tums from your desk drawer, gulping Mylanta from your glove compartment and having Pepcid or Zantac with your breakfast.

I had the special fortune to spend a big part of latter September and early October helping to host a International Plant Propagator tour for our nursery counterparts from Japan, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Ireland, England, British Columbia and the Netherlands. We were on the “Great Southern Tour” from San Antonio, Houston, Lafayette, Baton Rouge, New Orleans and into Mobile. The main observation that always resurfaces and was reinforced on this trip is the wonderful sharing people we have in our industry. Another observation is that the trends you read and hear about in our industry were evident in our travels.

Larger nurseries are getting larger to SERVE the mass market’s insatiable needs. All the companies were looking for new innovative ways to gain the attention and serve these large buyers in order to capture a greater “Market Share”. Corporate buzz words like maximization, efficiency, turnover, margins, quality control, R&D, goals and objectives, 10 year plans are flowing out of even what some of us would call weed pullers mouths. I saw that quality does not have to suffer with growth. The result of this trend is that mass markets are getting better plants. The marketing edge of small retail garden centers of having better quality is becoming thinner. From our visits I noticed that many of the larger chains are hiring better trained people to be sure that the quality is maintained for the customer. One thing that the mass markets have always had and continue to have is their merchandising and advertising strengths. A number of years ago when mass markets were feeling their way into the industry this was a concern. Now we have seen the whole industry has benefited from their commercials exposing the masses to the benefits of our products.

A niche that was evident that the “Big Boys” don’t have and do not want is the larger trees and shrubs and the R and U’s (rare and unusuals). They look at dollars per square foot and turnover. Large materials do not give them the return for the high dollar retail space. Small nursery producers have the same niche. Unless a product will sell in the 1000’s of units and if any artistic subjectivity is required in the production schedule, it does not fit in the product mix of larger nurseries.

A trend that was evident in small and large nurseries was the number of businesses that were looking for new plants. People are not waiting for others to develop new plants to meet our landscape needs. Large nurseries have plant introduction divisions while the small nurseries have a corner of the nursery where they keep their special finds for evaluation. Regional cultivars are evolving to meet the special climates of the areas. Trained eyes are discovering and searching for larger flowers, heat tolerance, disease resistance, soil toleranance, compact or rapid growth habits and other traits to fit specific needs. The Southern Plant Conference was held this month in Richmond to showcase these plants. Other local and regional conferences are held each month highlighting specific plant groups and the treasures they have found. Universities, botanical gardens and arboreta are working hard to give unbiased evaluations of these plants for use in our areas. Trade and garden magazines as well as gardening shows and marketing campaigns are pushing the New and Improved in the landscape. It is confusing and maddening to try to keep up but it is also an opportunity to find the niches.

There is still a place for small nurseries and retail garden centers but it is a challenge to constantly keep your edge. It requires keeping up, taking tours, attending seminars, reading and being active in your associations to have a voice in directing and controlling changes in your industry.

All our counterparts in the other countries face similar problems as we do with labor concerns and governmental restrictions. Water quality and quantity was on everyone’s list. Everyone agreed that we needed to be more involved and vocal in our local, state and national political arenas. We are doing better now but we were in hiding and inconspicuous for too long (we liked it that way) and we desparately need to be noticed and appreciated now for our industry’s value and contributions to our communities and states.

I took 100’s of slides on our tour and picked up many little tricks but the value of the trip was the overview of the whole industry from liners to the landscape. It is important to see what everyone else is doing so you can define your position or see where you fit in the industry. In future newsletters, I will pass on some of the tricks of the trade in the IDEAS section of the newsletter. I thank everyone for being so open and sharing with their production information.

The Plant Propagator Meetings were just a small part of the educational opportunities last month. Dr. Raymond Kessler and the Alabama Nurserymen’s Association held regional greenhouse seminars across the state. Large turnouts were at each event. Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia each held their field days highlighting research activities. Some of this information is highlighted below. Tennessee held its trade shows in Nashville and McMinnville. You can’t do it all but be sure to study the offerings and make it part of your business plans to participate in these educational opportunities. Look at our calendar to get the latest offerings. Landscape, nursery and urban forestry conferences are coming up soon.

I could continue to ramble on but I know your time is limited and I want you to have time to see some of the interesting research results below. Let us here from you. We are here to serve your educational needs and we enjoy our jobs. Let us know how we can do it better.


The following articles are featured in this month's Something to Grow On:









DISCLAIMER: Please remember that all information presented is a summary of research and not an endorsement of any product or a recommendation of chemicals. The official labels from the manufacturing companies offer the legal and proper use and handling information for all products.


At ANLA's biennial Legislative Conference, we heard the latest on legislative and regulatory issues affecting nursery growers. A hot topic for many growers was pending legislation that would reform ag industry hiring practices when it comes to undocumented workers. A bill is expected to be introduced that will outline ways for undocumented workers to gain a green card after working for a set time in the industry. More details as they become available.

Pro-immigration lobbyist Rick Swartz told the ANLA crowd that fully half of the ag workforce is illegal. After Swartz's speech, several owners of large nurseries told us that their figure is more like 75% illegal. Horn, by the way, mentioned that the nursery/floral sector has moved up to 3rd place in farmgate value among all ag commodities. "There's every reason to think, once people come to realize that your products are indeed agricultural products, that there will be more attention paid to floral and nursery from a research angle," Horn told ANLA members last week.

More good news from Horn: ARS has agreed to put another $150,000 into research on robotics to benefit container nursery growers. That comes on the heels of $150,000 that ARS granted to kick off the research involving Carnegie-Mellon University, NASA, and industry funding.


NOVEMBER 23, 1999

8:00 - 8:30 a.m. Registration
8:30 - 8:45 a.m. Welcome and Introductions
8:45 - 9:30 a.m. What's Been Buggin' You
Dr. Wheeler Foshee, Extension Specialist,
Pesticide Education, Auburn University
9:30 - 10:15 a.m. Common Diseases of Landscape Plants
and How to Control Them

Dr. Austin Hagan,
Extension Plant Pathologist
Auburn University
10:15 - 10:45 a.m. Break with Exhibitors
10:45 - 11:30 a.m. Drainage - Some Ideas and Suggestions
Phillip Hunter, Landscape Services,
11:30 - 12:30 p.m.Lunch
12:30 - 1:15 p.m.Distance Imaging Diagnostics
Dr. Ed Brown,
Extension Plant Pathologist,
University of Georgia
1:15 - 2:00 p.m.Cultural Practices in Your IPHM Program
Dr. Gary Wade,
Extension Horticulturist,
University of Georgia
2:00 - 2:15 p.m. Break
2:15 - 3:00 p.m. Landscape Maintenance -
An Atlanta Perspective

Mr. Gary Tomlinson,
Director of Technical Services,
The Morrell Group, Inc.
Atlanta, GA
3:15 - 3:45 p.m.Tour of Diagnostic Lab
Send registration fee of $15.00 (includes lunch) payable to
Jefferson Co. Extension System

Mail to:
Jefferson County Extension System
2612 Lane Park Road
Birmingham, Alabama 35226


And the winners are...

Eupatorium maculatum 'Gateway'

Fothergilla major 'Mount Airy'

Heuchera americana 'Pewter Veil'

Itea virginica 'Henry's Garnet'

Syringa reticulata 'Ivory Silk'

Viburnum nudum 'Winterthur'

For more information about the award go to:


The Ornamental Research Station in Mobile hosted its bi-annual Ornamental Field Day on October 19th. Auburn University faculty and graduate students shared information from recent and ongoing research projects.

Joe Eakes is overseeing a study on fertilizer evaluation, comparing Multicote, a new product, to two industry standards, Osmocote and Nutricote. He will be looking at growth data, plant quality, pot temperature and will monitor leachate. Another study of Dr. Eakes is on azaleas using Polyon, Osmocote and Nutricote. More nitrogen appears to yield better color and growth in some ornamental plants.

Ken Tilt and Rob Trawick brought trees and photographs to illustrate the importance of cyclic irrigation. The same amount of water was applied to trees in one, three or six applications daily. Trees which were irrigated three times a day did the best in this study; they grew significantly larger than their counterparts. There are many theories as to why this is the case. Perhaps fertilizer is used more efficiently. Perhaps it is because the plants are less stressed as they get water frequently, instead of just once. What Ken and Rob can say conclusively, though, is that cyclic irrigation is always superior to a once-daily regimen.

Their other study involves copper treatments in pots, specifically, whether copper can have a toxic effect on plants. SpinOut containers were used. These containers were painted with a copper hydroxide paint which is still potent after two years. RootRight containers have copper incorporated into the plastic, which lasts longer than the painted copper. Both treatments were used to keep roots from growing outside of the pots and both are quite effective. RootRight appears to be a little less toxic to the plants.

Establishing crapemyrtle into a tree form takes a bit of negotiating. Gary Keever has been dealing with the suckers at the base of crapemyrtles to ascertain which product or technique works best in minimizing sucker growth and promoting desired tree shapes. TreHold is a sprout inhibitor which was applied to the base of the cuts. Experiments were done with a product called ClipClean which is a device made of pruning shears with an attached container. The device was manufactured to douse the shears with an alcohol solution to disinfect after each cut so that the user wouldn't contaminate other plants. For ease in application Gary filled the container with TreHold so you cold cut suckers and suppress further growth in one procedure. This process worked well but the company now manufactures TreHold as an emulsion wax which is safer but no longer works in the ClipClean apparatus. Applications of the new emulsion to crapemyrtle have discolored the trunk and caused some peeling.

Future work will be done to determine why this happened. In addition to the crapemyrtle work Gary will be growing four azalea cultivars in the Camp Hill Experiment Station in an effort to develop plants that are healthier which will render them good crops for nursery growers.

His third demonstation addressed manipulating the length of light on perennial crops. Artificial light from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. resulted in plants that flowered up to 40 days sooner and with many more flowers. This kind of information could help extend the marketing time for perennials. Cold hardiness of plants grown with extra light is being examined.

Controlling spurge and bittercress is a bothersome problem. Charles Gilliam is looking at 10 different products. Rout and Corale gave the best control along with Rigor-0-0. The goal of this research is to find a product that would work with one annual application. During this investigation Charles found that some herbicides can be used for turf and plants. Manage worked very well to control nutsedge; however, it is quite expensive.

Using new products in new ways to control foliar diseases was presented by Austin Hagan. He has found that Compass (daconil ultrex) does the job best. Drenches don't work that well. For powdery mildew on dogwood most products were fairly effective. Miracid worked best on roses for the treatment of blackspot but they must be sprayed weekly. Heritage and Eagle did well on the foliar diseases that plague crapemyrtles.

James Altland, a doctoral student, presented his study on postemergence bittercress control. Manage and Image worked best. The challenge of his research is to determine how much of particular products can be used to effectively kill the weed without negatively impacting on plant size. Galley worked well on azaleas at the recommended package rate.

Another doctoral student, Janna Glenn, presented her research on the use of paper pellets in container plantings. Placing a layer of paper pellets (from one to two centimeters deep) in the bottom of the pots helps reduce nitrogen leachate as well as produce plants that are greener and 20% larger.

Chazz Hesselein is performing a fern fertilization trial to compare the quality of plants relative to the rates of fertilization.

He has also been looking at the control of T-scale on holly, a pest that is difficult to control and can render plants unsaleable. Since T-scale grows on the underside of leaves it is difficult to apply a spray. A systemic material is needed that would let the plant get the insecticide to the insect. Orthene and Pinpoint have been effective. Asphate products worked well. Regarding Florida wax scale, Chazz has found that Sunspray, an oil, works best. If you leave it untreated the leaves will blacken with sooty mold.


If you weren't able to break away to attend ANLA's European Grower Tour to northern Italy, you can still follow along on Sample diary entry: "On to Pistoia, the nursery capital of Italy. Today's itinerary featured 2 nurseries. Piante Mati innovations we studied included their 'Plant Plast' method, where B&B root balls on trees as large as about 6-inch caliper are wrapped around the sides with heavy black shrink-wrap plastic, allowing them to be shipped at any time or held above ground up to 2 years. Zelari Piante is a large, important Pistoia nursery. Most of their larger trees and shrubs are field grown, then containerized before sale. Most were interested in the equipment used for lifting and transporting large container plants."
(From David Morgan's newsletter: Weekly NMPRO).


Control of weeds is a perennial problem for nursery owners who specialize in container grown plants. One large problem is that growers must use a herbicide registered for a specific species but not a specific cultivar. It is often a long process to detect whether there is any damage to individual cultivars.

New ideas are tried and often rejected because they are either financially untenable, too labor intensive, or they just don't work. Researchers in Mississippi are experimenting with using crumb rubber for weed control in containers. The Mississippi experiment evaluated plants grown with crumb rubber and those without to determine the effectiveness of the weed control and plant phytoxicity. No difference was observed in appearance or from tissue analysis of the treated plants versus the untreated ones. No weed growth was observed in any treated containers.

With further analysis reasearchers should be able to ascertain whether using crumb rubber could be a feasible alternative to chemical control. The best application technique is also being explored.

(from a research paper by David Tatum, Kerry Johnson and Norman Winter of Mississippi State University).


In a culture that would like to operate with an environmental conscience, using a product (recycled tires) to compliment the growth of trees is a pretty exciting idea. Researchers at Mississippi State University are attempting to combine recycled tires and pecan trees.

Pecan trees (in the southwest) require the annual application of zinc to prosper. Crumb rubber gives off zinc. The main question addressed was whether placing crumb rubber in vertical holes within the drip line of 6 year old pecan trees would influence the mineral content of the leaves. The crumb rubber, in two different sizes, was placed in mesh tubes so it could be removed and tested for degradation at the end of the study period.

Zinc is the primary micronutrient of pecan trees. Zinc deficiency can be a problem. To prevent small leaves and a small harvest, zinc is applied annually at bud break and then every two to three weeks until terminal growth ceases. These annual zinc applications maximize pecan yields. Results of the study indicated that the crumb rubber applied as a vertical mulch increased the foliar zinc levels in all treatments.

More research needs to be done on plants that are less zinc tolerant.

(from a paper by Frank Matta, David Tatum and Francisco Salcedo of Mississippi State University).


The use of the pot-in-pot system for nurseries has been an important innovation to protect plants from blow-over, as a way of safeguarding plants in the winter, and maintaining a more favorable soil temperature for root growth. What is problematic in this scheme is that roots grow into the socket pots and, in some cases, out into the soil which then makes harvesting difficult, if not impossible. Suggested solutions are the modification of the socket pot by reducing the size of the drainage holes, raising the height of the drainage holes from the bottom of the container, and making webbing holes or applying chemical barriers to restrict root growth.

SpinOut is a commercial product that the manufacturer claims increases root branching which increases fertilizer uptake, water absorption and overall increased plant growth. The active ingredient is copper hydroxide which burns back the root tip. SpinOut is applied to a cloth which is placed inside the socket pot or else painted onto the inside of the socket pot.

Crumb rubber possesses some of the same properties as SpinOut. Zinc is slowly released from the crumb rubber. A study was conducted on bradford pear and magnolia grandiflora and a rating scale was developed that went from 1, no roots outside the container, to 8, where the plant was impossible to harvest.

Results indicated that SpinOut worked better than the crumb rubber. Supposedly, tires have a zinc content of 2% but that appears to be highly variable. Also, there may be a difference in the zinc oxide content between the thread or sidewall of the tire. The study showed that 2% zinc doesn't control rooting-out in the pot-in-pot production systems.

More studies will be conducted to observe root circling of plants in container production.

(from a study by David Tatum, Frank Matta and Kerry Johnson at Mississippi State University).



Most of September was dry with the exception of 2-3 good rain events. Our September plant disease samples included the following: southern blight (Sclerotium rolfsii) on Japanese anemone; Colletotrichum leaf spot on Anthurium; Cercospora leaf spot on azalea; Pythium root rot on azalea; Cercospora blight on Leyland cypress; Cercospora leaf spot on dogwood; anthracnose on euonymus; scab (Elsinoe) on euonymus; Cercospora leaf spot and Phytophthora & Pythium root rot on hydrangea; Phytophthora & Pythium root rot on English ivy; Pythium root rot on Loripetalum; Phytophthora & Pythium root rot on pansy; Fabraea (Entomosporium) leaf spot on Bradford pear; southern blight on celadine poppy; southern blight on primrose sundrops.

Cercospora blight on Leyland cypress causes a blight of twigs. Usually disease begins on lower, inner twigs/foliage where conditions are more humid. Disease was confirmed by microscopic evidence of Cercospora spores. Control involves protective sprays of Cleary's 3336. Sanitation may not be practical, but clean-up of fallen foliage would help.

Anthracnose occurred on anthurium and euonymus. Brown leaf spots may be small-large, circular-irregular in shape. Some lesions may occur along leaf veins or at leaf edges. Tiny, pin-point spore masses were present and observed on some leaf spots. Spore masses are seen more readily with a hand lens or stereo microscope. Anthracnose disease control typically requires sanitation of fallen leaves. With herbaceous plants or small trees, protective fungicide sprays may be recommended.

A number of the disease reports of September were root/crown rot problems. Phytophthora root rot was diagnosed in both woody and herbaceous samples of hydrangea, English ivy, and pansy. Root decay caused by this fungus can cause death of the affected plant. Infected areas of lower stems (crowns) and roots decay as a soft rot in the presence of wet soil conditions. Phytophthora is a 'water mold' and, as such, it develops and causes disease spread and development only in wet locations. As infections age and plants begin to die, the rotted areas dry out. Disease may develop after plant roots have been stressed or injured by drought or excessive application of fertilizer. Then, when wet conditions occur, the environment is conducive for Phytophthora development and weakened plants are more susceptible to disease. The droughty conditions earlier in July-early September may have stressed plants so that they were more susceptible to root disease when wet conditions finally occurred. Poorly draining soils are also conducive for Phytophthora root disease. Control in a nursery involves sanitation and water control and sometimes protective fungicide drenches.

In homeowner situations, where situations involve a small number of plants, protective fungicide drenches are usually not a practical and economic recommendation. Crop rotation is sometimes helpful in the landscape situation. Pythium is another 'water mold' that usually causes root disease of herbaceous plants and foliage blights of certain turf grasses. Pythium may cause root disease of woody seedlings or severely stressed woody plants. In September, Pythium root decay was identified on Loripetalum, begonia, hyrdrangea, English ivy, and pansy. Disease symptoms are similar to the water-soaked description for Phytophthora. Usually culture or ELISA work is needed to distinguish between Pythium and Phytophthora. Control recommendations for Pythium root decay are similar to Phytophthora disease control. See the AL Pest Management Handbook for specific fungicide recommendations.

Fabraea (Entomosporium) leaf spot on Bradford pear was fairly common in September. Spots are generally black, small and rounded. A hand lens or a stereo-microscope will reveal the presence of small black pin-sized swellings. When mature, these swellings will crack open and microscopic spores of the fungus are evident upon examination with a compound microscope. Control requires clean-up of fallen leaves. For protective fungicide sprays, see the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.

John Olive at the Spring Hill Ornamental Horticulture Substation in Mobile reported seeing Rhizopus stem rot of poinsettia. The disease is typically observed as a black, glassy rot of stems. Dieback will result from the cankers and stem rot areas. On Leyland cypress, a Cercospora blight was noted. Lower and inner foliage is typically affected first. Also, Phytophthora root rot & stem rot were noted on English ivy. Roots develop a brown, wet decay and lower stems also develop a wet brown-black decay. In some situations, the decay appears as an internal vascular discoloration with resulting dieback of vines. Removal of infected plants is recommended. Soil drainage should be improved. Irrigation should be reduced, if appropriate. Protective fungicide drenches are labelled; their use is most practical in nursery situations. See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook for a list of recommended fungicides.


Anemone, Japanese Southern Blight (Sclerotium rolfsii) Jefferson
Anthurium Colletotrichum Leaf SpotMontgomery
Azalea Cercospora Leaf Spot Autauga
Begonia Pythium Root Rot Lee
Cypress, Leyland Cercospora BlightBaldwin, Shelby
Dogwood Cercospora Leaf SpotRussell
Euonymus Anthracnose (Colletotrichum spp.)Washington
Hydrangea Phytophthora and Pythium Root Rot*
Ivy, English Phytophthora & Pythium Root Rot Autauga, Montgomery
Ivy, English Pythium Root Rot Montgomery
Loripetalum Pythium Root Rot*
Pear, Bradford Fabraea Leaf Spot
(Entomosporium sp.)
Pike, Montgomery, Russell
Pansy Phytophthora & Pythium Root RotBullock
Poppy, Celadine Southern Blight
(Sclerotium rolfsii)
Primrose Sundrops Southern Blight
(Sclerotium rolfsii)
*Locations are not reported for nursery and greenhouse samples.


Disease problems usually decline in October as temperatures drop and the summer field and garden crop season is largely over and the fall-winter plantings of small grains, have not yet begun or are just beginning. But, we still commonly see forage problems, landscape ornamental problems, greenhouse/nursery crop problems, vegetables from fall gardens, and field plantings of vegetables in the southern-most sections of the state.

At this time of the year we often see pansy diseases. Watch for leaf spots, crown rots and root rots.

The list below includes some common disease problems received in the lab during October of the past few years. Comments on control practices are brief. Refer to the Alabama Pest Management Handbook or individual spray guides or fact sheets for details.


ARBOR-VITAEPestalotia BlightBrown, dying sections of foliage, stress related.Sanitation; Cleary's 3336 remove stress condition.
AUCUBABotryosphaeria BlightBlack elongated lesions on stems cause a dieback. Also, black irregular lesions may develop on leaves.Sanitation; Cleary's Domain or a benomyl labelled on ornamentals may help.
AZALEACercospora Leaf SpotBrown, circular or angular leaf spots of variable size. See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook under Rhizoctonia web blight.
AZALEAColletotrichum Leaf SpotBrown circular-irregular spots (2-3 mm) diameter.Sanitation; usually this is a stress related problem which develops in the fall.
AZALEAPhomopsis Canker.Brown, sunken, elongated stem lesions.Pruning 3 inches beyond the canker margins. Cleary's protective sprays after pruning may help.
AZALEAPhyptopthora Root RotBrown, water-soaked root decay.Sanitation; protective fungicide treatments. See ANR-571.
Rhizoctonia Root RotBrown, dried dying roots.Sanitation; see Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
Phytophtora Root RotBrown, water-soaked dying roots.Sanitation. See Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
CALENDULARust (Coleosporium)Yellow-orange brown spots (0.3-0.8 cm diam.) with a yellow halo of 1-2 mm wide.Removal of calendula from close proximity to black pine and Scots pine (alternate hosts) may help.
CEDARArmillaria Root RotRapid or slow dieback; thin white mycelial mat under bark at soil line; thin black threads may be present under bark.Sanitation.
CHRYSANTHEMUMAlternaria BlightDark brown, irregular spots on foliage.Sanitation; see the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
CHRYSANTHEMUMFusarium Crown RotLower stem becomes reddish brown, dried and dead; lesion may be one-sided on stem or may extend around entire stem.Sanitation; see the Alabama Pest Management Handbook under Fusarium wilt.
Pseudomonas syringae & Erwinia carotavora
Black, wet rotting of stem.Sanitation.
Circular-irregular brown lesions on foliage.Sanitation; Cleary's 3336.
CRAPE MYRTLECercospora Leaf SpotBrown angular leaf spots of variable size.Sanitation and protective sprays of Cleary's 3336.
(Asperisporium or
Cercosporidium sequoiae)

Lower Limb/Needle Blight
Lower limbs browned in spots with abundant (microscopic) sporulation of C. sequoiae..Sanitation.
CYPRESS, LEYLANDSeiridium CankerSunken lesion on stem/branches.Sanitation.
DIANTHUSPythium Crown RotLower stem becomes dark and water-soaked.See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
DIANTHUSRhizotonia Crown RotLower stems become brown and dry rotted.Sanitation; see the Alabama Pest Management Handbook under leaf spot.
DOGWOODCercospora Leaf SpotSmall (3-5 mm), brown, irregular spots scattered over leaf surfaces.Sanitation.
ELMPowdery Mildew
(Phyllatinia or Uncinula)
White, powdery dusting on leaves.Sanitation of leaves in the fall.
(Agrobacterium tumefaciens)
Woody irregular gall that encircles lower stem area.Sanitation; crop rotation.
FATSIAPhytophthora and Pythium Root RotRoots become brown and water-soaked; the outer cortex will slip easily off the root central cylinder.Sanitation. Remove wet conditions.
HOLLYOedemaSmall (1-2 mm) raised, corky, light-medium brown spots on lower leaf surfaces. Reduce watering during cloudy weather; improve soil drainage.
HOLLYPhyllosticta Leaf SpotSmall (2-4 mm diam.) irregular or circular brown leaf spot. Sanitation; see Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
HOLLYHOCKPythium Root RotSee comments for Dianthus.Sanitation; improve soil drainage.
HOLLYHOCKRhizoctonia Root RotSee comments for Dianthus.Sanitation; Cleary's 3336 protective drenches.
HOSTARoot-Knot Nematode
Plants grow poorly; root galls evident.Solarization of the area before replanting.
HYDRANGEACercospora Leaf SpotBrown angular leaf spots of variable size.Sanitation. See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
HYDRANGEAAlternaria Leaf SpotBrown oval leaf spots.Sanitation.
IVY, ENGLISHAnthracnose
Irregular brown leaf spots (3-10 mm diam.) and dark brown elliptical lesions on stems.Sanitation. See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
IVY, ENGLISHPhytophthora Root RotBrown, water-soaked dying roots.Sanitation.
JUNIPERPestalotia BlightSections of foliage turn brown and die; stress related.Sanitation. Remove stress condition.
JUNIPERPhomopsis Tip BlightTip ends of branches turn brown. Blight moves from twig tips into inner foliage. Lower foliage may be affected first; seen more in nurseries than landscapes.Sanitation; Cleary's 3336 protective sprays. See the Alabama Pest Mangement Handbook.
JUNIPERPhytophthora Root RotFeeder roots become brown and wet rotted. They eventually dry out.Sanitation; solarization before replant may help; improve water drainage.
JUNIPERSeiridium Canker Sunken, brown lesion on branches.Pruning 3-4 inches beyond the edge of canker; after pruning, protective Cleary's sprays may help.
Brown irregular-circular spots on leaves and stems; some large blotch areas along veins.Removal of fallen leaves; pruning of disease stem areas; Cleary's protective sprays.
Irregular, spreading, brown lesions on leaves and small twigs. Leaf lesions may occur and develop along veins.Collect and remove all fallen leaves. Protective fungicides used only when trees are small.
MAPLECristulariella Zonate
Leaf Spot
Brown-gray zonate circular-oval leaf spots.Sanitation in the fall.
MAPLEPhyllosticta Leaf Spot Circular brown spots with dark brown or purple margins.Sanitation in the fall.
MARIGOLDAlternaria Leaf Spot Angular or round black spots.Sanitation.
Brown blotches on leaves; sometimes blotches begin at leaf tips; black fruiting bodies may be visible as tiny black dots in lesions.Sanitation. Cleary's, or Domain protective drenches.
OAK, PINXylella Scorch Disease Dieback with leaf edge scorch.Sanitation.
ORCHID, Oncidium sp.Colletotrichum Leaf SpotBrown irregular spots.Sanitation; Cleary's 3336.
PANSYAnthracnose(Colletotrichum)Brown stem lesions (cankers) on lower stems. Also, brown circular-irregular leaf spots of variable size.Sanitation; see the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
PANSYCercospora Leaf SpotLeaf spots are black, circular areas of feathery patterned discoloration.Sanitation.
PANSYMyrothecium Crown RotCrowns brown and decaying with tiny black capped white spore masses.Sanitation; see A. Hagan.
PANSYPythium Crown Rot and Root RotLight-medium brown, water-soaked crowns and roots.Sanitation; see the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
PANSYPhytophthora Root Rot/Crown RotSee desription for Pythium.See Pythium.
PANSYThielavopsis Root RotBlack spots (lesions) on roots.Sanitation; Cleary's 3336 protective treatment.
PERIWINKLE (Vinca)Stem Canker
May be secondary
Sections of lower stems become brown and dead.Sanitation; Cleary's 3336.
PERIWINKLE (Vinca)Pythium Root Rot.Roots become brown, soft and rotted.Sanitation.
PERIWINKLE (Vinca)Phytophthora Aerial BlightSections of foliage become blighted. Stems develop brown lesions.Sanitation.
PERIWINKLE (Vinca)Phytophthora Root RotRoots become brown, soft and rotted.Sanitation.
PINE, VIRGINIALophodermium
Needle Cast
Older needles turn brown and drop; very small (1-2 mm or 1/32 inch) football shaped, black fruiting bodies develop on browning needles.Protective fungicide sprays in the fall and spring. See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
POINSETTIARhizoctonia Stem Rot
& Root Rot
Lower stems develop dry medium-dark brown surface lesions; roots may become brown and dried.See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook. Use Cleary's 3336 or Topsin M.
POINSETTIAPythium Stem and Root RotLower stems and roots become medium brown, soft, water-soaked and rotted.See Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
POINSETTIARhizopus Stem RotStem sections become glassy and water-soaked; a delicate black mass of fungal threads and small black spherical structures may develop over the lesions.Sanitation.
POINSETTIABacterial (Erwinia)
Stem Rot
Black, water-soaked spots or lesions on stems. Lesions may girdle stems.Sanitation; pot-level irrigation; see Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
POINSETTIAFusarium Root and
Lower Stem Rot
Roots and lower stems become reddish-brown, dried and dead.Sanitation; Banrot drenches.
RHODODENDRONCercospora Leaf SpotRelatively large (5-15 mm diam.) irregular, brown spots.Sanitation. Use Cleary's 3336 or Topsin M or a WP benomyl (not Benlate).
RHODODENDRONPhytophthora Crown RotDark brown, wet decay at lower stem area.Sanitation. See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
RHODODENDRONPythium Crown RotDark brown, wet decay at lower stem area.Sanitation. See the Alabama Pest Management Handbook.
ROSECercospora Leaf SpotBrown, angular leaf spots of variable size.Sanitation; see the Alabama Pest Management Handbook under black spot.


November 4-6, 1999:
Gulf Coast Native Plant Conference.
Camp Beckwith, Fairhope, Alabama.
Featuring four habitats with guided field trips. For more information contact Thayer Dodd, Conference Coordinator, at 1-334-645-2222.

November 10-12, 1999:
1999 Alabama Fruit and Vegetable Growers Conference.
Holiday Inn South, Dothan, AL.
For more information e-mail: Joe Kemble ( or Arlie Powell (

November 13-16, 1999:
ALCA Landscape and Ground Maintenance Conference.
Baltimore, Maryland. Contact ALCA at 800-395-2522.

November 23, 1999:
3rd Annual Landscape and Turf Seminar.
Birmingham Botanical Gardens. For more information call Larry Quick at 205-879-6964. See the November Something to Grow On for a complete schedule of events.

January 19-21, 2000:
Mid-AM Trade Show.
Navy Pier, Chicago, IL. Contact Don W. Sanford at 847-526-2010, fax 847-526-3993; e-mail

January 27-29, 2000:
The Gulf States Horticultural Expo
Mobile Convention Center.
Educational Seminars and Trade Show
Call 334-502-7777 for more information.

January 29-February 2, 2000:
Southern Region American Society for Horticultural Science Annual Convention.
Lexington, KY. Contact Paul Smeal at 1107 Kentwood Drive, Blacksburg, VA 24060-5656, 540-552-4085; fax 540-953-0805; e-mail

February 3-6, 2000:
The Management Clinic.
Galt House, Louisville, KT. Contact ANLA at 202-789-2900;

March 18, 2000 - September 17, 2000:
Japan Flora 2000 'Communication Between Man and Nature'.
Awaji Island, Japan. See or Meg VanSchoorl at

June 1-3, 1999:
Mid-South Greenhouse Growers Conference.
Ramada Inn - Southwest Conference Center in Jackson, MS. More information will be available soon or you can contact Allen Owings, Extension Horticulturist at LSU.

July 8-12, 2000:
Ohio Florists' Association Short Course and Trade Show.
Greater Columbus Convention Center. Contact OFA at 614-487-1117; e-mail; web:

July 11-16, 2000:
American Nursery & Landscape Association Annual Convention.
Location TBA; contact ANLA at 202-789-2900;

July 16-19, 2000:
American Society for Horticultural Science 97th International Conference.
Disney Coronado Springs Resort, Orlando, FL. Contact ASHS at 703-836-4606; fax 703-836-2024; e-mail

August 3-6, 2000:
SNA 2000 - Southern Nurserymen's Association Researchers' Conference and Trade Show.
Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, GA. Contact SNA at 770-973-9026; SNA Infoline at 770-973-4636;

September 15-16, 2000:
TNA's "Tennessee America's Nursery" Trade Show and Conference.
Opryland Hotel Convention Center, Nashville, TN. Contact TNA at931-473-3971; fax 931-473-5883; e-mail

October 1-4, 2000:
Eastern Region International Plant Propagators' Society Annual Meeting.
Hyatt Regency Oak Brook, Chicago, IL. Contact Margot Bridgen, 26 Woodland Road, Storrs, CT 06268; phone 860-429-6818; e-mail

October 8-11, 2000:
Southern Region International Plant Propagators' Society.
Norfolk, VA. Contact David Morgan at 817-882-4148; fax 817-882-4121, SR IPPS, P.O. Box 1868, Ft. Worth, TX 76101; e-mail

January 27-31, 2001:
Southern Region American Society for Horticultural Science Annual Convention.
Fort Worth, TX. Contact Paul Smeal at 1107 Kentwood Drive, Blacksburg, VA 24060-5656, 540-552-4085; fax 540-953-0805, e-mail

August 2-5, 2001:
SNA 2001 - Southern Nurserymen's Association Researcher's Conference and Trade Show.
Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, GA. Contact SNA at 770-973-9026; SNA Infoline at 770-973-4636;

January 27 - January 31, 2001:
Southern Region American Society for Horticultural Science Annual Convention.
Fort Worth, TX. Contact Paul Smeal, 1107 Kentwood Drive, Blacksburg, VA 24065-5656; phone 540-552-4085; fax 540-953-0805; e-mail:

August 2-5, 2001:
Southern Nursery Association Resarcher's Conference and Trade Show.
Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, GA. Contact SNA at 770-973-9026; SNA Infoline: 770-973-9026; SNA Infoline: 770-973-4636;

September 30 - October 3, 2001:
Eastern Region International Plant Propagators' Society Annual Meeting.
Lexington, KY. Contact Margot Bridgen, 26 Woodland Road, Storrs, CT 06268; phone 860-429-6818; e-mail

October 18-21, 2001:
Southern Region International Plant Propagators' Society.
Houston, TX. Contact David Morgan at 817-882-4148; fax: 817-882-4121; SR IPPS, P.O. Box 1868, Ft. Worth, TX 76101; e-mail:

Send horticultural questions and comments to

Send questions and comments to

Letters to Bernice Fischman - 101 Funchess Hall - Auburn University, AL 36849.