Kestrel and Plant Gall

There has been a kestrel in the garden recently which is not a common sight in these parts. It was here in early December and is here again now – and probably was here in between – but we were away for a month.

Kestrel

Kestrel

Today and yesterday have been the first dry days since we got home and I have been doing some work in the garden.  I notice that the Symphoricarpos x chenaultii (Pink Snowberry or Hybrid Coralberry) has quite a few stem galls on it that look similar to those often seen on Forsythia x intermedia. From what I can find, it is uncertain whether the Forsythia galls are crown galls caused by Agrobacterium tumefaciens or whether they are caused by a species of the fungus Phomopsis.

Snowberry Stem Gall

Snowberry Stem Gall

Later: Murdo confirms that this is the same as a specimen he showed at the autumn HBRG meeting – I couldn’t remember whether it was on this plant – but it was.

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