I have a succulent plant that got some disease and is covered with holes. The holes started to appear a month ago. At first they were green (like something was eating it), probably growing and then they dried out and turned brown.

There are no bugs/insects around. Ants are everywhere in my garden but not on this tree. What is it and how can I treat it?

enter image description here

  • Is the succulent planted in bare ground or is it planted a pot? Approximately where in the world are you located? How do you water the plant eg At soil level or from above its foliage? What has the weather been like recently? Do you apply any kind of fertilizer? If yes, what & how do you apply it?
    – Mike Perry
    Commented Oct 31, 2011 at 15:03
  • It is Western Australia. Big pot, no fertiliser. There were some rain in the last few weeks. So I didn't water it for ages, most water came from above. I have a second plant nearby and it is absolutely fine in the same conditions. Commented Nov 1, 2011 at 0:26

2 Answers 2


This looks like anthracnose to me. The picture shows some typical symptoms:

  • no yellowing leaves
  • round sunken areas that are not soft or rotting but look brown, even bark like
  • anthracnose is also common in Australia in many major crops such as mangos, olives, lupins, avocados, pistachios


  • easy way: cut the diseased tissue off with a knife or pruners. After each cut pass it through a flame or dip it in medicinal alcohol. Keep cutting until no diseased tissue is visible. Avoid fertilizer, as sometimes, lush new growth is more susceptible
  • hard way: do all of the above and apply chemical control by spraying with Saprol (0.15%), Maneb powder spray (0.2%), Dithane, or Orthocid 50. Personally, I would rather throw the plant out than use this stuff again.
  • Looked around the web and it looks like you are right. Too bad, will have to cut down almost the whole tree. Commented Jan 18, 2012 at 1:54
  • 2
    This answer is correct. More than a year ago I cut almost all the leaves, but tree already has grown back. And no sign of the disease. Looks perfectly healthy, no other trees got this thing in my garden. Commented Apr 23, 2013 at 14:02
  • 1
    Just to update. Since then I moved (not far) planted that tree in the ground and it is grown much bigger and doing great! So see the holes - get rid of leaves and it will be fine. Commented Apr 22, 2022 at 2:20

I have recently found this problem on some jade cuttings I planted directly into the ground. They looked very healthy and green until early spring (I live in South Australia) when I noticed these exact holes appearing in them. One day they were green and healthy then green holes appeared and now I have very unhappy looking dark brown holes where the plant has tried to heal the damage. I was lucky enough to see the perpetrator of this act (only once) and it was a small see through thin maggot type creature, less than 1 cm in length. I have searched the internet for answers but have found none. I have some beautiful full jade plants in my garden, so if anyone out there knows what to do about this, please let me know.

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