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Sooty blotch and flyspeck (Geastrumia polystigmatis, Zygophiala jamaicensis) are two separate diseases that often occur together on fruit surfaces during summer and fall. Sooty blotch causes black-brown to olive-colored irregular blotches. Fruiting structures called pycnidia appear in darker spots. Flyspeck symptoms appear as sharp, black, shiny dots grouped into clusters. These specks are fruiting structures called pseudothecia. Both pathogens are superficial and are restricted to fruit surfaces and do not penetrate into the flesh.

Sooty blotch and flyspeck (Gauthier, UKY)
Sooty blotch and flyspeck.

(Photo: Nicole Ward Gauthier, University of Kentucky)



  • Sanitation (removal of bramble hosts, removal of diseased fruit)
  • Pruning to increase rapid drying
  • Fungicides during summer months


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