Name: Kathie B.
Our magnolia tree has small droopy leaves with yellow coloring and just looks
sick. I removed the mulch around the trunk to find that a white dusty mold had attached itself
to the trunk. Can it be saved? It only about 3 years old. I would like to incorporate rescuing
it in a curriculum.
The mold might actually be from the mulch. The following might be helpful
re. magnolia disease, nutrition problems, etc.
Anthony Brach, Ph.D
Contact your local U.S. Department of Agriculture extension service. They may be able to
identify the mold and be able to offer a recommendation on how to get rid of it. Just
removing the mulch may make the environment sufficiently dry that the mold cannot survive.
In the absence of any info from the extension service you could try spraying the affected
areas with 3% hydrogen peroxide, or even household bleach diluted 1/1 with water. Both agents
are very effective at killing mold and would not likely harm the tree if used conservatively.
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Update: June 2012