Brown Rot


Brown rot commonly affects trees and shrubs in the genus Prunus such as peach, plum, cherry, almond, and nectarine trees.

What is Brown Rot

  • The signs of brown rot include brown, rotted bloom, water-soaked, sunken lesions on twigs, and brown or grey mold on fruits.
  • Consequently, the infected fruits become uneatable.
brown rot on plum tree
Plum tree infected by brown rot


  • The fungus can overwinter in the infected twigs and fruits, especially if they stay on the tree or on the ground.
  • Then, spores are released during rainy periods in the spring and summer.
  • When the spores land on a surface of a fruit tree that has been wet for 5 hours or longer, it infects.

Treatment and Management

  • Firstly, choose resistant varieties.
    • These varieties include Hardired Nectarine, Harglow Apricot, Babygold No. 5 Peach, Elberta Peach, and Glohaven Peach.
  • Secondly, be sure to prune to allow for good air circulation.
  • Also water the tree from below so that you don’t wet the blossoms.
  • You should remove the diseased fruits and areas of infection as soon as they happen to reduce further damage. Additionally, remove fallen leaves.
  • Use a sealer to close all the cuts and wounds in order to decrease the chance of infection.
  • Lastly, you can use copper fungicides or sulfur powders weekly on the infected trees starting when the blossoms are just beginning to open and continuing throughout the growing season.
    • It is best when there is 12 hours of dry weather after spraying.

brown rot on pear tree
Pear tree infected by brown rot
Knowing about this disease will help you grow healthy fruit trees. If you would like to discover our fruit trees, explore our fruit tree catalog or shop page.