In the know: Understanding replant disease

In your time as an expert landscaper, you’ve greater than seemingly run throughout one thing referred to as replant illness/replant issues, which is very frequent in roses and fruit timber resembling apples, pears, plums and cherries.

If, for instance, a tree dies in your buyer’s panorama, more often than not he/she is going to request the same tree be positioned again in that very same spot. This, nevertheless, is the place the replant illness/replant downside comes into play.

In response to the PennState Extension, ‘replant downside’ is a time period that acts as an umbrella for a mess of soil-borne elements that negatively have an effect on tree development and efficiency. These elements, PennState says, can develop over years of earlier plant manufacturing and are the results of cultural practices and adjustments in soil ecology.

“Many elements related to replant issues are understood however some aren’t,” PennState Extension says on-line. “Some replant issues are attributable to a single or main agent (e.g., stem pitting), whereas others end result from a mixture of a number of elements (e.g., pH, nutrient imbalance, soil compaction).”


In response to the Washington State University (WSU) Extension, signs might be seen shortly after planting new timber.

Uneven development, stunting and shortened internodes might be indicators of replant issues, and when the tree is uprooted, it is going to present discolored roots, root tip necrosis and decreased root biomass.

WSU says youthful timber might die inside the first yr. Whereas many might survive, the general fruit manufacturing and high quality will probably be decreased.

Contributing elements

The PennState Extension states that there are two elements that may contribute to replant illness: biotic and abiotic elements.

If a replant downside is attributable to biotic elements, PennState says it’s then thought-about ‘replant illness.’ The accountable brokers can embrace pathogenic fungi, parasitic nematodes, viruses and micro organism.

“Replant illnesses are insidious as a result of they might happen on websites the place the earlier orchard appeared wholesome,” PennState Extension says on-line. “This will occur as a result of mature timber with an intensive and well-developed root system can tolerate a low degree of illness and pathogen populations can construct up undetected. It’s when the outdated orchard is eliminated and new timber are replanted that the pathogens overwhelm the small root system of the younger timber.”

In response to PennState, some organisms such because the fungus Armillaria and the root-lesion nematode can show extremely pathogenic and can infect wholesome seedlings.

PennState notes that weaker pathogens will usually require circumstances that predispose timber to illness resembling chilly harm, poor vitamin or wounds attributable to nematode feeding. Illnesses resembling stem pitting and root rot might be deadly however most aren’t debilitating, which ends up in timber that may’t develop or produce to their full potential.

Replant issues attributable to abiotic elements, PennState says, will develop slowly over the lifetime of a number of earlier orchards on the identical website. A number of the downside might be linked to soil degradation attributable to the repeatedly utilizing herbicides within the tree row.

If there isn’t a dwelling floor cowl current, PennState says the extent of soil natural matter will decline with a associated improve in soil compaction. This makes the positioning extra vulnerable to erosion and negatively impacts the expansion of the younger roots.

“It’s identified, for instance, that years of orchard manufacturing may end up in nutrient imbalances and fewer than optimum soil pH,” PennState Extension says on-line. “These points can simply be detected by customary soil assessments. Nevertheless, different potential issues embrace residual herbicides and the discharge of allelochemicals from decomposing outdated roots that will inhibit root development of younger timber. These issues aren’t simply recognized or corrected.”


Remediation of the replant website merely means that you’re trying to re-establish soil circumstances which are optimum for wholesome tree development.

If the choice to replant has already been made, PennState recommends utilizing each accessible useful resource to determine potential biotic and abiotic issues to ensure you’re utilizing correct corrective measures.

When evaluating a replant website, PennState says to make sure you run a nematode assay, a soil check (together with pH and natural matter), a evaluate of the cropping historical past, session with a specialist and an analysis of future cropping plans.

“Soil samples for each the nematode assay and nutrient evaluation might be taken on the identical time however have to be dealt with otherwise,” PennState Extension says on-line. “These assessments might be carried out earlier than the outdated orchard is eliminated, and the earlier the outcomes are identified, the extra time a grower has to think about choices for renovating the positioning.”

PennState says it could be worthwhile the have the soil examined even in case you gained’t be replanting the world for an additional few years, and all replant websites have to be examined each for fertility and nematodes.


The renovation course of will begin with elimination of the outdated timber, and through this step, it’s vital to drag up as a lot of the outdated root particles as you may.

PennState says contaminated root fragments will function reservoirs that can carry over illness to the brand new plantings. Root sections are in a position to survive for lengthy durations of time and will ultimately ship up suckers. In some instances, PennState says it could be essential to deal with the world with herbicides to assist eradicate the issue.

“It’s endorsed {that a} replant website stay out of tree fruit for not less than two years with a number of crop rotations,” PennState Extension says on-line. “A interval underneath crop rotation will assist with the addition of natural matter and in addition offers a wonderful alternative to include fertilizer and lime, get weeds underneath management and eradicate virus reservoirs.”


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