Mushrooms on a branches of a 40 year old Japanese Maple

Asked August 24, 2019, 9:25 PM EDT

Hi, I have mushrooms growing on two branches of a 40 year old Japanese maple. I've been trying trim the crossing branches, and the mushrooms are growing on sun exposed areas. The branches are major branches, but less than half the diameter of the trunk. The leave tips on these branches are wilting more at the ends, but they are in the sun more too. Do these branches need to be cut off or is there something else I should be doing? Thank you for your time.

Montgomery County Maryland

3 Responses

Mushrooms (fungi) grow on dead/decaying plant material. This means that the branches with mushrooms are dying. You cannot kill the fungi or treat the wood to cure the problem.

We'd recommend that you prune off the branches affected with the fungi. You'll need to prune below the affected part. Pruning back to the next crotch is usually advisable.
Here is our page on pruning ornamentals:
You may want to go to the Pruning Tree link.


Thank you Ellen! Could you suggest an arborist to come look at the tree? I would pay. Some of the infection is pretty distal on large long branches and I'd like to preserve some of that if I can. I also want to know of the tree needs better drainage.


If you would like an onsite diagnosis regarding the health of the tree, please contact a certified arborist. They usually do not charge for a site visit. However, if you decide to have work done, they should give you an estimate.