Orange powder/pollen

Asked June 22, 2016, 2:18 PM EDT

Have noticed an extensive amt of bright orange pollen/powder in my backyard(over several weeks) We have eight, 25+ year old Aristocrat Pear Trees--preliminary google search points to a rust of sorts. Is this true--this is first year, and it's pretty extensive. Treatment, prognosis?
My horticulture majoring nephew (in Colorado) saw a picture of my pear with orange "fingers" and said it's rust. Actually, I started looking, and all my pear tree pears have it... Can you tell me more?

Jefferson County Kentucky

1 Response

Pollen is most likely NOT the problem as the Bradford pears bloomed early this spring.

This could very well be a slime mold or other fungal growth. The "dog vomit' fungi is a common name for one of the slime molds which are fungi similar to mushrooms. When environmental conditions are favorable these structures appear. These are the reproductive parts of a fungal organism living on decaying organic matter on or under the soil surface. There is no control, spray or treatment to prevent them from from appearing. This natural process is what breaks down old leaves, tree roots and other debris in our environment. They may be unsightly but as our weather conditions change, they should be less obvious.

Feel free to contact our office if you have other questions.

Let me know if I can help you further!

Carol Wilder
Horticulture Technician
Jefferson County Cooperative Extension Service
810 Barret Ave
Louisville KY 40204