Magnolia Trees

Tree Infestation

Anonymous added on June 13, 2012 | Answered

I have a Japanese Magnolia tree that is infested by some type of fungus, I believe. I was told that they were mealy bugs, but after doing my research, it doesn't appear to be an accurate assessment of the problem. They're oval in shape and beige in color. The inside part of them are mushy, slimy and pinkish in color. My tree's barks/limbs have all turned black, to include my deck. The liquid, which is secreted from this fungus, is very sticky and dries up black in color. So far, I haven't found any pictures online to describe what has infected my tree and I'd sure hate to chop it down. Your help would be greatly appreciated.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on June 14, 2012

I think the culprit here is scale, though mealy bugs is naother possibility. It also sounds like the tree has sooty mold (the black you are seeing), which is actually an indicator of the pest infestation. Many times these pests are too small to see, but they can be damaging. The stickiness you notice is honeydew, which they secrete. I would recommend treating the tree with neem oil. This will treat both the pests and the sooty mold fungus. Here is more information that may help:

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