URBANA – In the past several years, spruce in Illinois have continued to develop disease and pest problems. University of Illinois plant diagnostician and outreach specialist Stephanie Porter said that each year, the U of I Plant Clinic diagnoses hundreds of spruce samples with multiple pest and cultural issues.

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Spruces are generally native to cooler regions and are adapted to cold conditions. They prefer full-sun locations with acidic and well-drained soils. Improper planting techniques as well as plantings in inadequate sites can be detrimental to spruce health. When exposed to unfavorable cultural or environmental conditions, spruce can become stressed and more susceptible to diseases and pests.

Porter, in collaboration with other U of I specialists, has recently released a spruce problem report titled Spruce Problems (Pest and Cultural Issues). It includes pictures and brief descriptions of spruce cultural issues as well as the most common disease, insect, and spider mite problems that affect spruce each year in Illinois.

This report can be downloaded from the U of I Plant Clinic website at: http://web.extension.illinois.edu/plantclinic/downloads/Plant%20Clinic%20Report%20Spruce.pdf.

Information from Susan Jongeneel at the University of Illinois