Melanose

Melanose is a fungus disease found in coastal and tropical regions of Australia. It strikes during humid and wet weather conditions.

Plant Parts: Fruit, leaves and twigs

Season: Autumn - Winter

Symptom: Rough and raised lesions that are dark brown or black and vary in size and appearance. Damage is superficial and will not affect the internal fruit quality. If your Fruit Salad Tree does get a dose of this disease when it is suffering from drought stress then look out for a discolouration on the branch work (cinnamon brown colour), often with streaks of yellow gum. Remove all of the infected leaf and branch work - do not dispose of any diseased cuttings in your compost.

Control: If you have caught the Melanose early then applying a copper spray at petal fall (always read the directions of anything you apply on your fruit tree), this will help with control. The copper spray protects the developing fruit. If your fruit tree is heavily infected on foliage, follow up with another spray of copper in late summer.

Preventative: Good balancing and removal of dead twigs on your fruit salad tree will help keep this fungal disease at bay as will an annual spray of copper in Spring and Autumn.

References: NSW Department of Primary Industries, QLD department of Agriculture & Fisheries , https://idtools.org/id/citrus/diseases/factsheet.php?name=Melanose , and of course our FST team.

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