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Month-by-month lists of common plant diseases, pests, and other problems you may encounter in North Carolina yards and gardens.

Back to BOLO list of months.


Brown patch (fescue/ryegrass)

Dollar spot (Kentucky bluegrass/ryegrass)

Fairy ring (all turfgrasses)

Large patch (bermudagrass/zoysiagrass/centipedegrass/St. Augustinegrass)

Leaf spot caused by Bipolaris/Drechslera (bluegrasses/bermudagrass)

Red thread (Kentucky bluegrass/fescue/ryegrass)

Rust (Kentucky bluegrass/fescue/St. Augustinegrass/zoysiagrass)

Spring dead spot (bermudagrass/zoysiagrass)

Woody Ornamentals

General: Slime mold on mulch in landscape beds

Multiple hosts: Phytophthora root rot, Armillaria root rot, Botryosphaeria dieback, powdery mildew, sooty mold, improper planting, cold injury (loose bark on stems), herbicide injury, overfertilization
Multiple shrub species: root-knot nematodes

Arborvitae: Phytophthora root rot, Armillaria root rot, Arborvitae leafminer adults (Argyresthia thuiella)

Azalea: Phytophthora root rot, Armillaria root rot, Exobasidium leaf gall, Phomopsis dieback, stunt nematode

Black cherry: black knot

Boxwood: Phytophthora root rot, boxwood blight, nematodes (lesion, root-knot, spiral)

Camellia: Exobasidium leaf gall, Glomerella canker, ring spot, Phytophthora root rot

Cherry-laurel: shot-hole, Botryosphaeria canker/dieback

Crabapple: fire blight, powdery mildew, cedar-apple rust

Dogwood, flowering: spot anthracnose on bracts, powdery mildew

Elm: black spot

English Ivy: anthracnose, bacterial leaf spot

Euonymus: powdery mildew

Gardenia: cold injury, root-knot nematode, Phytophthora root rot

Indian hawthorn: Entomosporium leaf spot

Japanese holly: black root rot, Armillaria root rot, Botryosphaeria canker/dieback

Junipers: Phytophthora root rot (except Eastern red cedar), Armillaria root rot, cedar-apple rust sporulating (especially on Eastern red cedar), Annosus root rot, Kabatina tip blight

Leucothoë: powdery mildew – note red spots on top of infected leaves

Leyland cypress: Phytophthora root rot, Armillaria root rot, Cypress (Seiridium) canker, Botryosphaeria canker/dieback, Passalora needle blight, algae on foliage, internal browning

Loropetalum: bacterial gall (knot), Cercospora (Pseudocercospora) leaf spot

Magnolia, Southern: algal leaf spot, scales, normal shedding of oldest leaves

Maple: anthracnose, Phyllosticta leaf spot

Oaks: oak leaf blister (Taphrina), anthracnose (Discula, Apiognomonia)

Rose: Armillaria root rot, common canker, Botrytis canker, crown gall, black spot, Cercospora (Rosisphaerella) leaf spot, powdery mildew, rose rosette, rose mosaic

Pear, ornamental: fire blight, cedar-quince rust

Red-tip photinia: Entomosporium leaf spot

Rhododendron: Phytophthora root rot, Armillaria root rot, Exobasidium leaf gall, Botryosphaeria canker/dieback

Spiraea: powdery mildew

Spruce: Stigmina needle blight

Sycamore: anthracnose

Herbaceous Ornamentals (Perennials, Bedding Plants)

Multiple hosts: Pythium root and/or crown rot, powdery mildew, overfertilization

Coreopsis: powdery mildew

Daylily: leaf streak

Hollyhock: rust

Iris: Heterosporium (Cladosporium) leaf spot, bacterial soft rot

Liriope: anthracnose on leaf tips, Fusarium crown rot

Oxalis: rust

Pachysandra: Volutella blight

Pansy/viola: Heat stress (time to replace)

Peony: ring spot (Tobacco rattle virus)

Rudbeckia: Septoria leaf spot

Vinca, annual (Catharanthus): Phytophthora root rot and aerial blight

Zinnia: Alternaria leaf spot, bacterial leaf spot

Fruits & Nuts

Multiple hosts: Herbicide injury, overfertilization, hail damage

Apple: fire blight, black rot, cedar-apple rust, frogeye leaf spot

Blueberry: Botryosphaeria stem blight, Exobasidium leaf and fruit spot

Blackberry: cane blight, rust diseases, virus diseases

Cherry and plum: black knot

Fig: cold injury

Grape: downy mildew (bunch grape only), anthracnose (bunch grape only)

Mulberry: Mycosphaerella leaf spot

Pear: cedar-quince rust, fire blight, Fabraea leaf spot

Peach: leaf curl, brown rot (blossom/twig phase), scab, plum curculio

Vegetables & Herbs

Multiple hosts: Herbicide injury, Pythium root rot and damping-off, Rhizoctonia stem/crown rot, overfertilization, nutrient deficiencies

Beans: Rhizoctonia stem rot/damping off, seedborne viruses

Cole crops: black rot

Pepper: bacterial leaf spot

Potato: late blight [though we have no records from potatoes in home gardens], air pollution injury

Tomato: Tomato spotted wilt virus, bacterial leaf spot, bacterial wilt, early blight, Pythium root rot/damping off, growth cracks

Arthropods of the General Landscape

Ground-nesting solitary bees (typically Andrenidae & Colletidae)

Wheel bugs (nymphs)

May beetles (Phyllophaga spp.; typically at lights)

White-margined burrower bug (Sehirus cinctus) nymphs (harmless, but can be found in large numbers; associated with mint seeds)

Arthropods Associated with Multiple Plants

Two-banded Japanese weevils

Eastern tent caterpillars (larvae & tents; typically on rosaceous trees)

Bagworms (Thyridopteryx ephemeraeformis; young larvae hatching)

Cottony scales (Pulvinaria spp. especially cottony camellia scaleP. floccifera)