How to Control Rust on a Birch

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    • 1). Rake the fallen leaves in into a pile. Treat the disease in autumn to prevent dormant rust spores from returning in the spring.

    • 2). Contact your local city officials for burning regulations. If burning is authorized, pour gasoline over the pile of leaves. Strike a match and light the pile on fire. Burn the pile to the ground to prevent dormant rust spores from reinfecting the tree.

    • 3). Inspect the birch leaves for powdery bright pustules in the spring. If the rust infection has returned, fill a pressurized hand sprayer with 1 pt. of liquid copper fungicide. Wear work gloves and goggles for protection.

    • 4). Cover the ground and nearby vegetation with plastic drop cloths. Drench the birch foliage with the liquid fungicide. Follow the fungicide manufacturer's directions on the label for specific application details.

    • 5). Treat the tree with the fungicide every two weeks until the rust infection is gone. Use shorter intervals if the disease is severe.

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