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What are the slimy orange balls on my evergreens? Will they hurt the tree? What do I do about them?

According to Jennifer Smith, horticulture agent for K-State Research and Extension in Douglas County, the orange slimy balls in many cedar trees right now are the fruiting structures of cedar-apple rust. Although they will not harm your cedar tree, she said, they produce thousands of spores that can infect apple and crabapple leaves and fruit. Control of the disease on cedars is not feasible, but resistant varieties of apple and crabapple trees are available.

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