WSU Extension


Caption: Elytroderma needle cast
Photo by: R.S. Byther
print version| pdf version| email url    

Pine : Elytroderma needle cast
(revision date: 4/23/2014)

Trees infected with Elytroderma needle cast often display clusters or flags of red-brown needles in the spring. The diseased twigs turn up at the tip. The bases of affected needles often remain green. In summer, infected needles develop dark lines (fungal structures) which open along a lengthwise slit. Infected needles usually drop in fall and winter, but may turn gray and remain on the tree. Trees may be stunted, since several years of infection can cause nearly complete defoliation. Knobcone and ponderosa pines are most severely affected. Ponderosas may develop pitchy lesions on twigs. The lesions are streaked reddish when cut open. Infected trees are more susceptible to attack by root rots and bark beetles.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Do not plant in low areas with poor air drainage.
  • Space plantings and prune lower branches to provide good air circulation.
  • Control weeds under and near plantings to reduce humidity.
  • Remove diseased trees to prevent spread of infection.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

None recommended

    - hide images

+ Show larger images

Caption: Elytroderma needle cast
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Elytroderma needle cast fruiting bodies
Photo by: R.S. Byther