What is fire blight?
Fire blight is a bacterial disease for which there is no single effective treatment.
Hosts of fire blight include apple, pear, loquat, quince, cotoneaster, hawthorn, photinia, pyracantha and some other ornamental plants.
Fire blight seriously effects fruit production worldwide and is present in North America, the United Kingdom, Europe, the Middle East and New Zealand.
What does fire blight look like?
Disease symptoms include:
- brown wilting of blossoms, shoots and leaves, with a scorched appearance
- discoloured sunken areas or cankers on branches, limbs and trunks
- production of bacterial ooze in warm, humid weather
- red-brown discolouration of the sapwood
- shoots and branches bent into a 'shepherd's crook' shape.
How does fire blight infect plants?
Plants can become infected:
- through blossoms where the bacteria is transported by bees during pollination
- through surface injuries caused by insect feeding, hail or mechanical damage.
If you suspect you have found symptoms of fire blight, call the Exotic Plant Pest Hotline on Freecall 1800 084 881.