Photos of Gymnosporangium juniperi-virginianae, Cedar-apple rust, Apple-cedar rust

Gymnosporangium juniperi-virginianae, Cedar-apple rust, Apple-cedar rust is a strange fungus that grows on junipers (mostly red cedar, Juniperus virginiana) where it starts out as a surprisingly dense, heavy, almost metallic-like gall, then the following year produces telia, or jelly-like orange protrusions that emerge from the holes or depressions in the gall. Bright orange, they get one's attention, and once the telia or orange tails pop out, they produce spores which ride the wind for miles, landing on and completing their lifecycle on the leaves of apples, hawthorn and crab apple species causing yellow lesions on the upper leaf surfaces, which ooze through the leaf, disfiguring an infected apple tree. Then it produces black spores, which in-turn re-infect junipers (which they don't harm) and begin repeating the two-year cycle. It is a threatening, destructive disease in apple orchards. Medicinal use? (Don't try this at home). According to King's American Dispensatory (1856, 2nd ed., pp 577-78.) " . . . they have a somewhat aromatic odor, and a bitterish taste. These are sometimes powdered, and administered successfully as a vermifuge, in doses of from ten to twenty grains, three times a day, in some convenient vehicle. . . The excrescences or cedar apples, as they are called, which are sometimes found on the tree, are decided anthelmintics. The following makes a pleasant and excellent vermifuge and tonic, for pale, sickly children. I have used it with much success in hundreds of cases: Take of cedar apples one pound; of black alder berries, (Prinos verticillatus), [now known as common winterberry, Ilex verticillata] one pint by measure; digest these for fourteen days, in one quart of alcohol, and one pint of molasses. The more recent the articles, the better. Dose, one fluidrachm, three times a day, for a child one or two years old; it is laxative, tonic and vermifuge.

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