bflocat
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Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:23 pm
Location: Western New York

Unidentified Bush with strange growths...

I hope there is no limit to how many questions the newbees can ask...I just got my camera out tonight, so I have lots

:D

Anyway, we have a large shrub growing along our walkway that has been trained up to grow along our entryway.

[img]https://i287.photobucket.com/albums/ll160/bflocat/CIMG0104.jpg[/img]

The part growing along the wall has these strange white things on the older leaves - larve? disease? - and it looks like they may begin to turn brown over time.

[img]https://i287.photobucket.com/albums/ll160/bflocat/CIMG0107.jpg[/img]

Also, I wonder if they eventually become the strange brown fuzzy-looking stuff that you can see on the branches, particularly on the right in this photo:
[img]https://i287.photobucket.com/albums/ll160/bflocat/CIMG0109.jpg[/img]

Does anyone know what this bush is and/or what the growths are? The growths cover only the part of the bush that grows along the wall, but not on the part along the walkway (although I think they are part of the same plant).

Thanks for your help!

TheLorax
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May I please have a clear photo of a branch complete with all the leaves on it? Just one branch. It would be great if you could get close ups of other twigs and nodes and such. Also too, would you be able to take photos of the undersides of the leaves to share?

MaineDesigner
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Location: Midcoast Maine, Zone 5b

I think you have scale on your euonymus:
[url]https://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/ent/notes/O&T/shrubs/note15/note15.html[/url]

TheLorax
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I caught the serrated leaf margins but couldn't see the leaf arrangement or any other defining characteristics other than the growth habit which sort of reminded me of Euonymus. Which Euonymus does bflocat have?

I've seen a similar scale before but not on Euonymus. It's been on Celastrus scandens. I thankfully haven't had any plants get hit with this. People were destroying their American Bittersweet to stop the spread. If bflocat wants to save the plant, could horticultural oils combined with heavy pruning help save the plant?

TheLorax
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You nailed that one MaineDesigner-
https://hgic.clemson.edu/factsheets/Graphics/euonymus/scale.htm
https://woodypests.cas.psu.edu/Insects/EuonymousScale/thumbnails/EuonymusSCMaleFemalet.jpg
https://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/ent/notes/O&T/shrubs/note15/euonscale2.jpg

bflocat
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Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:23 pm
Location: Western New York

I'll try to get a better picture, but I did a bunch of internet research based on MaineDesigner's response, and it definitely seems to be scale.

Our main concern is what to do now. The infected part of the bush is next to our front door (right side of top photo), and it's VERY bad over there, with virutally every leaf and branch covered, and some bare spots already occuring. The infection is less as the bush moves away from the door. But (you can't see this in these photos), that bush then becomes a hedge that runs for about 12 feet along our walkway. There doesn't appear to be any infestation on these branches or leaves.

I think our best bet is to take down the bush next to the door (we were considering it anyway, for various reasons, including the scale infestation). Then we could treat the hedge portion to try to eliminate the possibility of spread.

Does anyone know how difficult it is to get rid of scale? I've read that it's challenging, even with various pesticides...

TheLorax
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No need for a better picture. MaineDesigner probably knows which species it is and I have this feeling that it's an exotic. Me personally, I tend to try to save native species but let my ornamentals go when something like this happens.

I looked online because I do remember seeing something like this on American Bittersweet and I do remember the people removing and burning the plants to stop the spread. I don't know if they treated other plants with anything as a prophylactic but I could call and ask. I've never toyed with this type of a scale and evidently my friends didn't want to toy with it either or they wouldn't have removed their plants and burned them. I have tried to treat other scales though. I find scale, particularly hard bodied scale, to be extremely challenging at best if not virtually impossible or impractical to control. Maybe you better wait for MaineDesigner to come back and post what he thinks as chances are good he has hands on personal experience with this little bugger.

I think I know why this particular scale is so challenging and you may have missed your first threshhold to spray given it's mid May-
https://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/ent/notes/O&T/shrubs/note15/note15.html

Personally, if I had this type of scale I wouldn't part with my hard earned money buying chemicals to spray on it and doubtful I'd even spend money trying the horticultural oil route on a species that might end up being an invasive once the species is identified but... I realize people (myself included) form attachments to plants and may want to try to save them. I've been known to part with a lot money trying to save plants just because they were gifts to me even when I knew the odds were stacked against me.

One thing I have learned is that when something like this happens, it is a good idea to formally identify your foe so you can familiarize yourself with it's life cycle and identify other species it affects. If you don't have species growing that are susceptible, you wouldn't need to do anything however you would probably want to buy a replacement that was vulnerable to this type of scale. Another thing you could do would be to re-visit how you are fertilizing and watering your other plants. Many diseases seem to attack stressed plants so meeting their cultural requirements to the best of your ability is a good sound practice that friends are repeatedly trying to drill into my head.

From looking online for you-
https://woodypests.cas.psu.edu/FactSheets/InsectFactSheets/html/Euonymus_Scale.html
My guess is the name of your foe is listed above and they also provided a list of other species this little European import gravitates to.

MaineDesigner
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Location: Midcoast Maine, Zone 5b

I think you have Euonymus fortunei* aka Wintercreeper. I don't think getting rid of this lends itself to a DIY job as it is very tough to eradicate. I think your choices are to remove and burn all the affected sections of the plant and/or hire a licensed pesticide applicator. I'm not totally sanguine about the effectiveness of licensing programs as I've met my share of licensed pesticide applicators, arborists and landscape architects who were frankly incompetent but I wish you luck. If you go that route I would not tell them what you think the problem is other than "something is wrong with my shrub". If they fail to identify it immediately look elsewhere. It is a good sign if they claim to be I.P.M. (integrated pest management - basically they seek to use the least toxic and most narrowly targeted effective solution) oriented. Treatment would take at least two and perhaps three or more visits.

*There is huge variation among the cultivars of this species. I'm falling back on Justice Potter Stewart's definition of pornography, "I know it when I see it."

TheLorax
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I'm falling back on Justice Potter Stewart's definition of pornography, "I know it when I see it."
Amusing comment given this is Euonymus.

This is the type of fortunei with which I have more familiarity but I do realize there are probably 100 Euonymus cultivars out there-
https://www.nps.gov/plants/alien/fact/eufo1.htm
I think our best bet is to take down the bush next to the door (we were considering it anyway, for various reasons, including the scale infestation). Then we could treat the hedge portion to try to eliminate the possibility of spread.
Say bflocat, I take it your entire hedgerow the same plant? If it is and if you want to try to protect the other plants, you might want to remove the most heavily infested one right now and burn it. I'd then read up on the lifecycle of this scale and try for horticultural oils timed properly on the others as a prophylactic while planting smaller (more affordable) scale resistant varieties of shrubs in and amongst your existing shrubs that can begin establishing to take over in the event you can't stop the other shrubs you have from becoming infested. A mixed species hedgerow would be best. Could help save time and $$$ in the long run if you aren't able to stop the spread.

As far as hiring a licensed pesticide applicator, Maine Designer expressed reservations about doing so and I would have to agree. Timing of whatever is used is going to be critical and it is doubtful your end result would be anything other than ongoing bills from the person treating it for the next few years. This one is tough and it does plant hop so to speak. Don't time an application properly and the lil buggers will be able to move on over to the next plant they find hospitable, if they haven't spread out already.

Really sorry this happened to you.

Editing to add something I just thought of, you trained that shrub to go up the side of your wall by your front door! Nice look to that. What about considering a plant like this for that area-
Wisteria frutescens (American Wisteria)-
https://www.floridata.com/ref/W/wist_fru.cfm
Decent photo of the plant here-
https://www.flickr.com/photos/deegoo/2370933975/
and here-
https://www.botos.com/mall2005/imgp4396a_800.jpg
Look up 'Blue Moon' or 'Aunt Dee'. Those are cold hardy.

bflocat
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Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:23 pm
Location: Western New York

Thanks for all the advice. I have some updates! We cut the part trained up the wall down completely. The ENTIRE back side of the plant and the shingles of the house were covered in the scale, so it was obviously a good decision. We have also decided to cut down the rest of the shrub, which extends at an angle along our walkway. We're going to instead open up that area and turn it into a flagstone patio (we just bought the house in December, so we're still personalizing it), which will work much better with the space. [Right now the walkway is at a weird angle, and the Euonymus was far too big for the space].

So here's my newest question: how likely is that scale to spread to other shrubs? I read some internet sites that say scale is particular to the plant it's on and other sites that say it can spread from species to species. We checked all around the area and didn't find scale on anything else, but we have numerous shrubs that came in direct contact with the Euonymus scale.

Any ideas?

And Thanks again! This site has been incredibly helpful to us.

TheLorax
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The Euonymus Fact Sheet at the link shared above in my third post provided a list of species that this particular scale could spread to. So, the information you found on line that stated this "scale is particular to the plant it's on" is correct. The link provided a list of species that the scale was "common" to. If you have any of those listed plants growing in that area, chances are quite good that within time all will become infested with the scale... even those that aren't highly susceptible that were listed as species that occasionally had problems with this particular scale. It would be good to print off that list. Reason being would be that when you go shopping for replacement plants, you'll be able to avoid planting back species that are either highly susceptible or susceptible to Unaspis euonymi scale. Here's the link from above again-

https://woodypests.cas.psu.edu/FactSheets/InsectFactSheets/html/Euonymus_Scale.html

Good luck to you!

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