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Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist
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What does it mean when Maple tree has black spots on leave

Resolved Question:

What does it mean when Maple tree has black spots on leaves?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: General
Expert:  Anna replied 5 years ago.

Do the leaves look like either of these photos?



Thank you.

Expert:  Anna replied 5 years ago.
Hello again,

It appears you went offline without seeing my Request for Information. I'm going to go ahead and give you an answer. By far the most common cause of black spots on maple leaves this time of year is something called maple tar spot. It is caused by a fungus. It actually starts out earlier in the summer with tiny yellow spots, which most of us don't notice. By late summer, the spots have become black, and more noticeable. The spots can be different sizes. Maple tar spot is considered a nuisance, rather than a threat to the tree. It doesn't do permanent damage or cause the tree to die. Usually, the best course of action is to do nothing. The fungus overwinters in fallen leaves, so you can decrease the chances of infection the following spring by raking up and destroying the fallen leaves. However, in many areas maple tar spot is so common that most of the trees are infected. You can confirm this information on Purdue University's website:

If you have more questions about this, let me know by clicking on REPLY. Your tree should be fine.


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