Insect & Disease Control Services For Portland Oregon

Serving Families Throughout Portland & the Pacific Northwest

You’ve invested a lot of money, time and energy into keeping your home in great shape and that should extend to the trees and landscaped areas of your yard too.

Did you know more than 90% of insect and disease problems in plants are caused by their basic needs not being met?

Keeping your trees, shrubs and plants strong and healthy is the best way to prevent attacks from insects and disease.  Why?  Their own defense systems will fight off attacks from most pests they encounter and being healthy naturally increases their ability to fight off diseases.

This makes Plant Health Care (PHC) services a cost-effective way to ensure your plants and shrubs continue to grow and thrive.  With regular visits from our plant health care experts, any issues can be caught early when it can most likely be dealt with easier and with more success.

Disease control in the Pacific NW

Our mild climate is great for growing a wide variety of trees and shrubs, but this also makes it conducive for Spring disease.  There are 3 things necessary to produce disease symptoms:  host plant, the correct environment (our normal Spring weather) and the presence of a pathogen (disease organism).

Since the Spring season provides the perfect weather for disease growth, pathogens are all around us.  Sadly, this means that IF a plant is susceptible to a disease, you will likely see disease symptoms.

The good news is that General Tree’s insect and disease control treatment and programs can greatly reduce those disease symptoms.  Unfortunately, there is no cure so repeated treatments are needed to keep the symptoms in check.

There are simple things you can do to help reduce the symptoms, such as keeping your landscape clean by removing fallen leaves/twigs and by regularly (and properly) pruning all trees and shrubs.

We want to let you know about some issues commonly found in the Portland-Vancouver area.  If you’re aware of them, you can watch for the signs as early detection is vital for a successful treatment.


Dogwoods are popular, which means Portland homeowners should be aware of Dogwood Anthracnose.  While the disease is most common on native dogwoods, it has been identified on several ornamental species too.

It’s a fungus that over-winters on dead twigs, any leaves left on the tree and fallen leaves.  In late spring, affected leaves may appear to have brown water stains, often near the tip.  Sometimes, instead of blotches, leaves may have brown spots with dark brown or purple margins.

It’s common for infected leaves to drop during the summer, leaving the tree looking partially bare.  Affected twigs get sunken spots that eventually enlarge and encircle the twig, girdling it and results in its dying.  Dead gray leaves often remain on the tips of infected twigs all winter long.

4 tips for controlling symptoms

  • Prune out and destroy any infected twigs
  • Clean up and destroy all fallen leaves throughout the year
  • Plant resistant species of dogwoods
  • Treat your tree with proper disease control in the Spring


If you have a birch tree in your yard, you need to know that Borer populations are on the increase in the Pacific Northwest.  While a destructive pest, we may be able to treat your trees to suppress infestations-if caught in time.

  • Die-back of branches (commonly the top growth)
  • D-shaped exit holes (1/8 inch), often with rust-colored stains
  • Foliage wilting on affected limbs beginning in early spring


Mites are most active during warm weather (Spring through Fall) and can be a big problem in dry landscapes.  These pests feed on many types of shrubs and trees, which means most landscaped yards may be at risk.

Damage usually appears as a mottled or stippled effect on the underside of leaves and has an off-color or tan look on needle evergreens.  Mites can over-winter in any protective site, like plant debris, cracks/crevices in plants and the soil.

Common damage causing mites

  • Two-spotted spider mites
  • European red mites
  • McDaniel spider mites
  • Eriophyid mites

General Tree uses specially formulated insecticides and oils to control them.  Of course, our best advice is to water plants regularly and keep all prospective mite sites moist as that will reduce the chance of an infestation.

The certified arborists and trained experts at General Tree Service can tailor a plan to take care of all your trees, shrubs and plants so you never have to worry about these issues.

Protect your investment. Contact General Tree Service for your free estimate for Plant Health Care, which includes insect and disease control services.

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