Lime tree

Lime Tree with Louse Scale

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Question by: Paul J.

My lime tree has been infested with louse scale. On hands & knees I have rubbed off the scale using lime sulpha & then gave it an overall spray . I have notice the bark of the tree has split in places & the tree is extruding small amounts of sap. I have noticed some new flowers, but not many & the number of limes have reduced. What is the future of the tree now the bark has split & can I do anything to heal the wounds & save the tree which is about 54-5 years old. thanks

Sarah's reply

Hi Paul.

It sounds like your lime tree has had a bit of a hard time. It is a good start that you have removed the scale this would have been putting your tree under stress. I would probably repeat the spray – with a horticultural spraying oil to suffocate any stragglers you may have missed.

Having said that – the splitting bark could be a more serious problem. This could be collar rot, caused by a fungus in the soil. Check for damage around the base of the tree. It can be treated with an anti-fungal spray if it isn’t too bad. Prune out any damaged wood and sanitise your tools after and clear away any mulch from around the trunk. This can be common in areas of poor drainage. If things don’t improve it may need to be a new tree in a new spot with rich soil and good drainage.