What nutrient deficiency could this be on my fruit trees? (If at all)

Hey guys!

Noticed these leaves on my fruit trees and wanted some opinions.

Let me know what you think!

Are they Apple trees?

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Could you supply more details about the trees? One of the trees appears to be a sweet cherry but the others I am not sure what they are. Could you tell us the species of each tree, the cultivar, and the rootstock if know.

Also helpful would be the type of soil (sandy, loam or clay) and some information on the climate- hardiness zone and what the Summers are like. Most of the forum members are in North America and they are not familiar with the climate of New Zealand where you live.

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The tree appears to be ether sweet or sour cherry. I wouldn’t be able to tell the exact problem from the pictures and with the information I currently have but it may look like a virus. What makes me think it’s a virus is the short internode spacing I noticed on the tips of the growing branches and the deformed leaves. Are there any other symptoms such as chlorotic ringspots and/or a mosaic pattern on the leaves?

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Thank you for your reply! I didnt leave much information, sorry about that.

They are Lapins, Rainier, and Stella Cherries on Colt rootstocks. There are also plums and prunes (Victoria and Stanley) that are affected to. They are on a GQ rootstock

The climate here is pretty stable, nothinh crazy nor crazy humidity. Where I am is classified as zone 8B/9A

Summers here are generally moderate, with highs ranging from 65-80 and lows of 60-70. Its considered a maritime temperate climate, much like the UK, or the northern west coast. Just abit warmer.

The soil here is loamy, with abit of clay. Lots of earthworms

Lemme know what you think!

What does it mean by short internode placing?

Well, the leaves grow spaced out abit - and the leaves seem almost burned. They also seem very shiny/glossy, and “plumpy” - almost reminding me of peach leaf curl.

Its very weird indeed. I got these trees from a trusted nursery who is known to take care or their trees really well, so a virus woulf definitely be a surprise. There are no mosaic patterns or rings that I can find…

A virus would be uncurable, correct? Almost like a death sentence?

Thank you for the reply!

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Have you recently applied a nitrogen fertilizer combined with a period of hot weather? If yes, this might be the reason for this leaf burn.


Could it be verticillium fungus?

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And then there is the old standby of herbicide drift. Looks like dandelion killing season in your neck OTW.

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My other idea was fertilizer burn and/or herbicide drift which others have covered. What I meant by short internode spacing was, if you look at the tips of the branches, there is very little space between each leaf, especially the new leaves. In your second picture the leaf looks slightly deformed with necrotic spots which was what originally made me think it had a virus. There could be other reasons for such symptoms though.

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One possibility is cherry leaf spot.

Also here is some info on plum leaf spot.

It’s also possible that more than one problem is present since the symptoms are different on some of the trees.

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I just noticed that your plums and prunes are also affected by this. In this case a virus seems less likely (I wouldn’t think a trusted nursery would have all their plants infected), though anything is possible.

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That has happened, about 1.5 months ago. Would that be chemical burning of the roots?
What would you recommend doing in such a situation?
Thank you for your reply!

There werent ever any potatoes here, so I dont believe so.

Thank you for the explanation!
What other problems in your experience may cause short internode spacing?

That certainly looks like whats happening.

Would abnormally glossy, plumpy leaves also be a sign of chemical burn?

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Thank you for the information and links! That’s awesome of you. I’ll have a read and see if it helps. For now, copper and sulfur sprays in the autumn seem like my best bet I would assume?

Oh thank goodness!

Have you ever used Phosphonic Fungicide on your cherries? I was wondering if I should use that in the event of a fungal infection, which I’m unsure about.

There werent any chemical sprayings that I know of… but then again, a drift is always a possibillity. Gosh, how far can it drift though? Haha