Asked July 30, 2013, 11:54 AM EDT

Client came in with sample of sap. I could not get good pictures. However, sap in running from tree. She said she put tar on tree to try to stop sap. She has also been spraying tree with Phyola for insects. Wants to know what to do to take care of problem if it is a problem.

Alpena County Michigan fruit fruit trees apricots

1 Response

Sap is a general sign that a tree is injured and is part of a natural defense mechanism. We need to examine the trunk and soil to try to determine the cause of the injury. Possible causes include cold damage (trunk is flat on one side, usually the SW side), insect entry (look for entry holes), mower damage (marks on trunk), herbicide damage (unusual foliage color & shape, discolored bark where sprayed), poor soil conditions (heavy clay. soil that does not drain well), fertilizer salt damage (basin at base of trunk) plant pathogens (poor soil conditions, rot near soil line). Also it helps to know what the variety and rootstock of the tree as some are not well suited to Michigan. Apricots are notorious for gumming and dying for seemingly no reason..