Common Pests And Diseases Of Sylvester Palm Trees

May 16th, 2023

Common Pests And Diseases Of Sylvester Palm Trees

Sylvester Palm Trees

The Sylvester palm tree is a popular choice in landscaping due to its beautiful appearance and hardiness. Native to southern Florida and parts of the Caribbean, it can grow up to 50 feet tall with a spread of up to 25 feet. Its long, feathery fronds and large trunk make it a striking addition to any landscape.

However, like any plant, the Sylvester palm tree is susceptible to pests and diseases that can harm its health and appearance. It is important for landscapers and homeowners to be able to identify and treat these issues to keep their Sylvester Palms looking their best.

Pests of the Sylvester Palm Tree

Spider Mites

Spider mites are tiny arachnids that can infest the Sylvester Palm Tree and cause significant damage. They feed on the sap of the tree and cause the leaves to turn yellow, brown, or even fall off. Spider mites are often found on the undersides of leaves and can be identified by their webbing. You can remove them by washing the tree with a strong jet of water that will dislodge them from the leaves. In severe cases, you should hire a professional company such as Green Solutions to get rid of these mites.


Scales are small, oval insects that attach themselves to the Sylvester palm tree and feed on its sap. They can cause leaves to turn yellow and fall off. If you notice sticky residue on the leaves and trunk, the chances are that your palm tree has been infested by scales. Using a horticultural oil or insecticidal soap can help to remove them. If you fail to get rid of them, contact the Green Solutions team to take care of them for you.


Mealybugs are tiny, fluffy, white insects that feed on the sap of the Sylvester palm tree. They cause the leaves to turn yellow and wilt. These small insects can be found on the leaves, fronds, and trunk of the tree if you inspect carefully. As long as you water and fertilize the palm tree properly, mealybugs will not infest your palm tree. If you still notice them during the inspection, just use a jet of water to wash them off from the tree.

Palm Aphids

Palm Aphids are small insects that can cause the leaves to turn yellow, wilt, and distort. If ignored and the infestation grows, your palm tree will die. Timely watering and fertilizing can help to palm aphid infestation at bay. Regularly inspect your tree for any signs of infestation and prune off affected branches to keep your palm tree safe. If you do not have the time or patience for the required maintenance, our experts are up for the task.

Diseases of the Sylvester Palm Tree

Fusarium Wilt

Fusarium Wilt is a fungal disease that affects the health of Sylvester palm trees. It is caused by the fungus Fusarium oxysporum. The roots of the tree are attacked and the fronds start to wilt and turn yellow. Make sure you react fast or the disease can spread quickly and eventually kill the tree. This disease happens when the tree is planted in poorly drained soils. Since there is excess moisture, it promotes the growth of the fungus.

Ganoderma Butt Rot

Ganoderma Butt Rot is a fungal disease that affects the base of the trunk of the Sylvester palm tree. The fungus Ganoderma zonatum is responsible for the disease. It attacks the tree's root system and causes the tree to eventually fall over. The disease can be identified by the presence of a white rotting fungus at the base of the trunk. If you want to ensure that your palm tree is not affected by this disease, always keep the base of the trunk free of debris and plant it in an area where the soil is properly drained. Regular inspection can reduce the risk of spreading.

Diamond Scale

Diamond Scale is a bacterial disease. The leaves and fronds of your Sylvester palm tree are affected. The name of the bacterium that causes this is Xanthomonas campestris. It creates diamond-shaped lesions on the fronds. Eventually, the fronds turn yellow and fall off. Overhead watering is one of the main reasons behind this disease. This is because the excess moisture can promote the growth of the bacteria. You can prevent the disease from spreading by pruning away the infected fronds.

Lethal Yellowing

Lethal Yellowing, caused by the bacterium Phytoplasma, is another bacterial disease. This disease affects the tree's vascular system and kills it over time. It is spread by a small insect known as the planthopper. You must never plant palm trees where this insect has affected other trees. Otherwise, it will spread to your palm tree. Although insecticides are quite effective in controlling them, you may have to call a professional as they sometimes fail to work.

Hire Green Solutions for your Palm Tree Care Needs

Green Solutions is your go-to for all your palm tree care needs. Our team of experts is well-versed in identifying and treating common pests and diseases that can harm your Sylvester palm tree. We are committed to providing high-quality services to ensure that your palm tree stays healthy and beautiful for years to come. Do not wait until it is too late.  Give us a call at 813-684-7336 to schedule an appointment today!


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