Fire blight is a disease that can infect apples, pears, and certain ornamental species including crabapples, cotoneaster, and mountain ash. Occasionally it may also appear on cherries, plums, Juneberry (also called Serviceberry or Saskatoon), and raspberry. This disease, caused by the bacteria Erwinia amylovora, can damage blossoms, fruit, leaves, shoots, and branches. If it is not controlled, fire blight may kill the entire tree or shrub. Infected tissue cannot be cured, but will need to be removed from the tree to prevent further spread.
During this time of the growing season, it is common to observe aphids on garden plants, including peppers. However, when dense aphid populations are present, they can reduce pepper yields and cause rapid plant health decline.
Another insect that has been mistaken for the Asian giant hornet (also known by its media-popularized name of ‘murder hornet’) is the horntail wasp. Horntail wasps are wood-boring insects that are harmless to humans, as they do not have venom and cannot sting.
Squash bugs are a headache for gardeners almost every year in South Dakota. As their name implies, squash bugs feed on squash along with many other cucurbits. Injury caused by extensive feeding appears as wilting and may result in the death of infested plants.