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Witches Broom

Pinus torreyana


A "witch's broom" is a proliferation of shoots that can look like a bundle of twigs or witch’s broom. It can be cause by fungal or viral infection of the plant. This one is on a Torrey pine which is endemic to the Southern California coast and one coastal island.


The Torrey pine is an endangered species growing only in the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve, in coastal San Diego county, and on Santa Rosa Island. This one is in the reserve.

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Ava T-B
Ava T-B 4 years ago

I don't think it kills the tree, Neil, so at the Reserve, they just leave these alone.

Neil Ross
Neil Ross 4 years ago

Thanks for the link, Ava. I found my answer :)

Neil Ross
Neil Ross 4 years ago

If the branch was lopped, perhaps that would stop the infection? It looks amazing.

Ava T-B
Spotted by
Ava T-B

San Diego, California, USA

Spotted on Jul 7, 2013
Submitted on Dec 28, 2018

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