Why Do My Leaves Have Rust Spots?

Why Do My Leaves Have Rust Spots? Treating Rust Fungus on Plant & Tree Leaves

You expect to find rust spots on your patio furniture after a few years of wear, but orange rust on leaves may have you asking, “Why do my leaves have rust spots?” While this orange powder on your tree leaves may look like rust, it is actually a fungal disease that’s producing repositories of powdery spores. If left untreated, rust disease can spread to other plants in your garden. Don’t worry! The Monster Tree Service team is here to share everything you need to know about treating rust fungus on plant and tree leaves. We’ll start by explaining what leaf rust is, what causes it, and how to treat & prevent it.


What are Rust Spots on Leaves?

Rust spots on leaves resemble the rust build-up you’d find on an old bike, lawn chair, or nail head. However, they are pretty different. A fungal infection that produces powdery reproductive spores causes rust disease in plants. These spores develop into less than half-inch diameter circles and can appear in various rust-like colors, including orange, brown, purple, and red. You can easily wipe off rust disease spots with a cloth or tissue, which makes it easy to identify the condition. Rust spots on plants typically form underneath leaves but can also be visible on the top side. If left untreated, rust disease will spread and affect neighboring plants. While rust spots won’t typically kill the plant, they will negatively impact overall plant health and growth. This could leave your plants and trees more susceptible to other pest and disease infestations.


What Causes Rust Spots on Leaves?

Fungi from the Pucciniales order cause rust disease spots. These fungi travel through air currents and remain dormant until they find the perfect conditions to grow. They love warm and moist environments with limited airflow to blow them away. Once they latch onto a plant, they can grow and quickly spread to neighboring foliage. If you live in a warm, humid climate or use misters in your garden, your plants may be more susceptible to rust spot formations.


How Do I Treat Rust Fungus on Plant & Tree Leaves?

Once you discover rust fungus on your plant and tree leaves, you need to address the issue early on to control its spread and damage to your garden. Here are ways to treat and prevent rust disease.


Prevention & Control

Once rust disease latches on to one plant, it can readily spread throughout your garden. It is always best to take preventative measures to stop the spread of the disease. Consider your soil conditions or consult with a Monster professional arborist for optimal recommendations. Additionally, avoid wetting plant leaves when watering your plants. Instead of using garden misters, consider using a drip hose placed at the base of your plants to keep the leaves dry. When designing your garden, give your plants adequate air circulation and inspect new plants for rust spores before bringing them home. Finally, remove and destroy infected plant and tree branches at the first signs of rust disease, and consider proper pruning to increase airflow and minimize spores from taking hold.

Professional Plant Health Care

Plant disease infestations like rust fungus can be scary because they have the potential to destroy your garden and leave it susceptible to other diseases and pests. Invest in professional Plant Health Care services to protect your investment and keep your garden looking its best. Our specialists know how to spot worrisome signs of disease and prescribe a plan to deal with it effectively. We rely on research and the latest tools to treat the issue at the source, saving you time, money, and worry. Invest in the overall health of your garden rather than struggling to find a remedy when conditions flair up.


We’re Here to Help Keep Your Plants Happy and Healthy

If you are concerned about rust spots on your trees or shrubs, contact your local Monster Tree Service today! We can diagnose the condition, treat the problem, and get you back to enjoying your beautiful outdoor space.