Maple Tree Diseases and How to Prevent Them

maple tree diseases

Maple trees are elegant additions to any home. From a single, simple red maple to acres of sugar maples, protect your maple trees with proper prevention and pruning. If you suspect an issue with your maple trees or are looking for ways to promote healthy growth, here are some common maple tree diseases to watch out for.

Tar Spot

One of the most distinct maple diseases is tar spot. If you notice tar-like spots on the leaves of your maple tree, it could be infected with this fungal disease. These large spots damage your maple leaves and create an unpleasant look.

The best way to prevent this fungal disease from occurring or spreading is to take care of your fallen leaves. Rake your maple leaves consistently to keep the fungus contained and avoid further spread among other maple trees.

Asian Longhorned Beetle

There are many insects that can cause damage to your trees if left to their own devices. One of the worst maple tree bark diseases is actually caused by a beetle infestation. Asian long-horned beetles eat the sapwood under the bark layer of your maple tree. This damage dramatically reduces the transportation of nutrients and water throughout your tree.

It’s very difficult to remove Asian long-horned beetles, and an infestation typically causes your tree to die within two years. A professional tree service provider can assist you in identifying and preventing the spread of these pesky beetles.


While frost damage can cause your maple tree to lose foliage and experience shoot dieback, these symptoms shouldn’t appear when your tree hasn’t been exposed to a frost. Frost-like symptoms can also be signs of anthracnose. This damaging disease causes defoliation, twig death, and shoot dieback.

Preventing anthracnose is difficult without professional assistance. Watering and proper drainage are critical elements of a prevention strategy. If there are already signs of anthracnose on your maple tree, use fungicides or other techniques to protect your trees from further damage. It’s best to leave this to a professional.

Verticillium Wilt

This dangerous fungus routinely kills maple trees. Commonly known as maple wilt, verticillium wilt begins at the root system and affects the entire tree. From cankers and dieback to seemingly scorched leaves and diseased branches, this fungus can cause disastrous effects.

It’s very difficult to spot the initial signs or prevent the spread of verticillium wilt. However, professional care, routine watering and fertilizer and other treatment options can improve the health of your maple tree and prevent maple wilt from completely killing it.

Other Diseases and Infestations

For less common, but no less dangerous, diseases and infestations, you need to be on guard for a variety of signs and symptoms. Maple trees can be infested with leafhoppers, boxelder bugs, gall mites, cankerworms or aphids. Each of these insects plays a role in damaging your tree and reducing its beauty and overall health.

Other common diseases include root rot and cottony scale. Many of these infestations and diseases have similar symptoms, so a professional tree service can give you more detailed information about the exact disease and how to protect your maple trees.

Safari Tree Can Help

Take advantage of local, qualified expertise to prevent maple tree diseases and promote healthy growth in all of your maple trees. Whether you have questions about these particular diseases or need professional assistance in preventing these diseases, request a quote today from Safari Tree.

Our professional team understands the common and uncommon issues with maple trees and other local tree species. Receive the expertise you need to keep your yard looking beautiful and your maple trees growing healthy year after year.