True Cedar (Cedrus): Needle blight

categories: Conifers Ornamentals True Cedar

revision date: 2023-02-08 12:00

Shoot needle blight on cedar.
Shoot needle blight on cedar
Photo by: R.S. Byther


Certain fungi have been associated with needle blight on Atlas and Deodora cedars. In spring, infected needles turn a tan-pink color. The blight may be only on the new shoots or may also affect last year’s growth as well. However, the discolored tissue does not affect entire branches. Shoots will die and needles will drop from the plant from June into August. The following spring and early summer, small, black fungal fruiting bodies may be seen at the base of dead needles and along the stem of the killed shoot. The fungus overwinters in dead shoots. The blight is more of a problem in years with prolonged wet, cool springs. Similar symptoms have also been observed without the association of fungi.

Management Options

Use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for successful plant problem management.

Non-chemical Management

Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

  • Remove and destroy blighted plant material and plant debris that is found under trees or caught in limbs.

Chemical Management

IMPORTANT: Visit Home and Garden Fact Sheets for more information on using pesticides.

  • None recommended