Georgia peaches and blueberries are starting to show signs of the lack of cold weather this past winter. Phillip Brannen, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension fruit plant pathologist, says that rust in peaches and blueberries will be more likely this year.
“We just didn’t have enough frost to take off the leaves,” Brannen says. “Leaves on trees and bushes stayed on longer this year. In some cases, they didn’t really come off at all in the winter.” Brannen explains that due to the leaves staying on longer than they should have, overwintering rust is expected to be very prevalent.
“The overwintering rust goes directly onto the new leaves as they emerge in the spring,” Brannen says.
The rust is predicted to be much worse than it has been in previous years.
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