As summer approaches, rain and humidity become an even greater environmental factor in Florida. As a result, the soil may become more moist, which may result in root rot.
Root rot is a condition in which the plant roots become decayed due to environmental or biotic factors such as sudden changes in temperature, excess or insufficient water, certain fungi and bacteria, or toxicity from pesticides. In the case of bacterial or fungal root rot, an arborist may apply chemicals or fungicides to the affected area in order to kill or slow the fungal and bacterial growth. In the case of excess or insufficient water, remedying the water allowance of the plant will, in most cases, resolve the problem. In any scenario involving the application of chemicals to plants, an arborist should be consulted as the chemicals used in pesticides and fungicides are often very toxic and can be detrimental to the surrounding soil if incorrectly applied.
When root rot begins to affect a plant, there are several key signs that become obvious relatively quickly. The plant will begin to grow more slowly, older leaves will begin to die and fall, and newer leaves will undergo a form of necrosis in which the edges of the leaves begin to die and become brittle from a lack of nutrients.The roots will become limp and often discolored, and the outer layer may slough off if the roots are handled or removed from the soil.