White substance on needles??????

mrchips1952

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I have a Ponderosa that I collected on Monday and potted that same day that is showing some sort of white "milky" substance on the needles. I don't recall seeing this when I collected it. Any idea what this could be? Confused Dave in Colorado.:confused:
 

mrchips1952

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photos

I doubt if a photo would help unless I had a macro lens. It just looks like shall I say "bird droppings" on the needles. The tree right next to it has none of this. I guess I'll just pull a few needles and take them to the local garden center and let the tree expert take a look.
 

Bill S

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Mix up the ole water, dish detergent, teaspoon of alchol, and a touch of vegetable oil and give it a good spray. If it's poop it'll wash off easy enough, if it's pests, the concoction should help that too. Pine scale can leave a gob of mess like that, sounds pretty fast though.
 

mrchips1952

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Mix up the ole water, dish detergent, teaspoon of alchol, and a touch of vegetable oil and give it a good spray. If it's poop it'll wash off easy enough, if it's pests, the concoction should help that too. Pine scale can leave a gob of mess like that, sounds pretty fast though.
Thanks Bill......I will get this done this afternoon.
 

pwk5017

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Had the same issue on a ponderosa that was collected a year ago. I should preface that the pest appeared 2-3 months after it was collected last year. I sprayed it down with a diluted oil mix and it took care of the problem. I believe it is some time of insect like the woolly adelgid. The diluted oil suffocates it.
 

jquast

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Mix up the ole water, dish detergent, teaspoon of alchol, and a touch of vegetable oil and give it a good spray. If it's poop it'll wash off easy enough, if it's pests, the concoction should help that too. Pine scale can leave a gob of mess like that, sounds pretty fast though.
Bill,

how much water, vegetable oil and soap are you adding to make this up with the one teaspoon of alcohol?

Thanks,
Jeff
 

october

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The general recipe is 1-2 table spoons of dishwashing liquid..(Ivory, Palmolive etc..) 1 table spoon of cooking oil (pure vegetable oil). Mix this with 1 gallon of water. Then pour it into a spray bottle. Now add a capful of alcohol to the spray bottle (the cap from the alcohol bottle), Shake well..

Also, after about 18-24 hours I would completely rinse off the tree. After spraying, keep the tree out of direct sun for 2-3 days.

Rob
 

jquast

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The general recipe is 1-2 table spoons of dishwashing liquid..(Ivory, Palmolive etc..) 1 table spoon of cooking oil (pure vegetable oil). Mix this with 1 gallon of water. Then pour it into a spray bottle. Now add a capful of alcohol to the spray bottle (the cap from the alcohol bottle), Shake well..

Also, after about 18-24 hours I would completely rinse off the tree. After spraying, keep the tree out of direct sun for 2-3 days.

Rob
Thanks for the info Rob. I have an idea of what I'll be doing this weekend now.

jeff
 

october

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There is more info that I should mention. If it is scale, you should try to remove all the ones that you see or most of them before you spray. You can use a tooth pic of tweezers. This will make spraying much more effective. Scale lay their eggs underneath the protective shell. By removing them, you are exposing the young and killing them as well.

Even if you don't remove them before spraying, you will need to remove them after a few days or so. If they are dead, they will flake off, if they are still alive, they will smear (so to speak).

Also, after about 2-3 weeks, you may and probably will have to spray again. This is to kill the second generation. Since and if this tree has scale, you will need to do periodic inspections of it all through the season and each season. Scale tends to regenerate, usually in the Spring. Also, very IMPORTANT..Keep this tree isolated from other trees.. Do not have it near other trees and do not water it where the residue is washing over other trees. Until it is clean, try to keep some distance between it and your other trees.

I hope this is helpful,
Rob
 

jquast

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Rob,

This was extremely helpful. I moved into a new house last year and the neighbors have a lot of roses which has caused me a lot of issues. I never had an issue with scale, mildew or aphids until now and it has been a battle all spring. With young kids at home I prefer to go the organic route in dealing with these.

jeff
 
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mrchips1952

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There is more info that I should mention. If it is scale, you should try to remove all the ones that you see or most of them before you spray. You can use a tooth pic of tweezers. This will make spraying much more effective. Scale lay their eggs underneath the protective shell. By removing them, you are exposing the young and killing them as well.

Even if you don't remove them before spraying, you will need to remove them after a few days or so. If they are dead, they will flake off, if they are still alive, they will smear (so to speak).

Also, after about 2-3 weeks, you may and probably will have to spray again. This is to kill the second generation. Since and if this tree has scale, you will need to do periodic inspections of it all through the season and each season. Scale tends to regenerate, usually in the Spring. Also, very IMPORTANT..Keep this tree isolated from other trees.. Do not have it near other trees and do not water it where the residue is washing over other trees. Until it is clean, try to keep some distance between it and your other trees.

I hope this is helpful,
Rob
Thanks Rob...that is a wealth of information. I will follow your instructions.
 

rockm

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Bottom line with scale is that manual removal is the best method to get rid of it. Spraying is haphazard, as it depends greatly on catching the insects before they form their protective covers and are larva crawling over the plant. Once they become hardened "scale" on the plant stems the effectiveness of spray drops dramatically.

THe most effective spray for scale is dormant oil spray, which coats the insects with oil and smothers them. This kind of thing is applied when deciduous trees are dormant, as the oil coating will kill leaves.

I would think such an oil-based spray would also not be very good for pines.

State extension agencies recommend a variety of ways to get rid of the things, but say one of the most effective is simply scrubbing them off...

http://www.colostate.edu/Depts/CoopExt/4DMG/Pests/scale.htm
 

october

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It is always a good idea to test spray a small area, maybe in the back of the tree to see how it reacts. Horticultural oil that you buy works very well on scale as well. However, it is a pesticide and although the toxicity is low, there are still health hazards. What I like about the home made stuff is that in my last 7-8 years of dealing with scale, I have noticed that the homemade recipe works just as well as the store bought. Also, when sprayed, a tree can be near pets, in a garage, green house, house etc without having to worry about it comiing in contact with people or animals.

Also, as Rock and I originally stated, the main focus is picking them off... There are different kinds of scale.. Oyster shell scale is very hard to kill with pesticides because it does not penetrate. However, white juniper scale and soft bodied other forms can be killed by it.

Scale eggs are carried by wind and also ants. If you have an ant problem, that might be adding to the scale issue.

p.s. The oil I used to use before I discovered the home made stuff was Bonide brand All seasons Horticultural Oil concentrate. It is not restricted to dormancy or other limits. However, always read the labels thouroughly. As I said, this product worked well, but the homemade stuff has less restrictions.

Rob
 
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rockm

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Rob is right on all counts, including the ant thing. I've had ants transfer scale and "farm" it on several trees. If you have scale, you have ants and vice versa.

I've gotten pretty expert at seeing scale on some of my trees that get it regularly. I go on search and destroy missions every few weeks in the spring and summer. I also take a close careful look at my trees in the late winter/early spring before leaf break. You can see them a lot more easily then.

Also, on Ponderosa, take a very close look at what you think is scale. I've got a Ponderosa this spring and I've noticed that it develops small white flakes on buds and sometimes on the bark from dried resin which might be mistaken for scale. When I first noticed it, I poked it with a piece of wire as I usually do with scale. It didn't "squish." It kind of flaked off.
 

davetree

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I have used horticultural oils that are meant to be used in the growing season, and they killed the scale on my elms without damaging the leaves. I use a dormant oil in the off season though.
 

tanlu

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I'm noticing bug problems as well. After I sprayed the new candles with a fungicide/insecticide spray I found in my pines what appear to be fly larvae. They come out of the soil every time I water heavily and I just remove them with a thin stick. I use organic fert cakes along with miracle grow, which has done wonders on the health of the trees, but I believe have attracted insects. How much damage can fly larvae inflict on pines? Do they eat the roots?

I'm seeing less of them than before, but I'm guessing more eggs are still hatching..
 

rockm

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Maggots (fly larva) don't eat tree roots. They eat the rotten protein in the fertilizer cakes. They come standard for with fert cakes :D. If you're making your own fert cakes, you can add a dash of malathion to keep the nasties under control.
 
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