Caring for fruit- or nut-bearing trees can catch a lot of people off guard, even if they happen to be experienced gardeners or landscapers. Trees that produce fruit or nuts are certainly hardier than vegetable plants, but they aren’t invincible, and they could run into several unique issues. Take the humble pecan tree. If you have a pecan tree, you may have noticed strange bumps on its leaves in the summer. So what are those bumps on your pecan tree leaves? We’ll answer that question and help you deal with the fallout.

What Are These Bumps?

Those strange bumps on your pecan tree leaves are actually called galls, and they’re the results of an insect infestation in the tree. The insect Phylloxera devastatrix, also known as the pecan phylloxera, causes these bumps. Pecan phylloxera are tiny insects that resemble aphids. They lay their eggs in the pecan tree’s bark, and the eggs then hatch into larvae. The larvae make their way onto the leaves of the tree, feeding on them and forming the galls to protect themselves. The insects stay inside the galls until they mature. They’ll then emerge from the galls and go on to mate and lay the next year’s batch of eggs.

Are They Bad for the Tree?

We’ve mentioned how these phylloxera affect the leaves of your pecan tree, but do they actually harm the tree in the process? The answer isn’t always so simple. There are two major subsets of phylloxera: one kind affects only the leaves of the tree, while the other kind affects both the leaves and the nuts. If you notice a particularly large number of leaves falling from your tree, you might have the more aggressive phylloxera that affects the nuts.

How Do I Treat My Tree If It Has Them?

If you suspect your tree could have an infestation of phylloxera, you’ll need to start treating it early in the spring. You can put insecticide on the leaf buds just as they come in. This will prevent the phylloxera from being able to use those leaves when the insects mature. However, if you already see galls on your tree’s leaves, insecticides won’t work, as the insects are protected from them when they’re inside the galls.

Despite all this, pecan phylloxerae don’t pose a massive threat to pecan trees as long as you treat for them early.

If you want to find healthy pecan trees for sale online, you’ve come to the right place. Check out Plant Me Green’s store page to find the perfect pecan tree for your yard.

Tags: Pecan Trees

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