Saturday, 31 March 2012

Party on the Jamun Tree

When the doctor advised bed rest I was disappointed, didn’t know how I would spend a week at home with absolutely nothing to keep me entertained. But at the end of the week not only do I feel better I got observe fascinating facts about the tree that I could see from my balcony.

While resting in the balcony I observed that leaves on one of the tree had tree gum coloured water spots on it. On enquiring with my neighbour I found out that the tree was a Jamun Tree. On the first day I noticed that there were a lot of bees and wasps frequenting these leaves. Though there were ants on the tree none on these leaves. By evening there were drops of this liquid falling from the leaves.
The next day it looked like the liquid had harderend and now I found ants on the leaves. The bee and wasps went to leaves that had fresh spots. I also observed that this was happening on the leaves that had some amount of sunlight falling on them. When I touched the leaves the liquid felt sticky.
On day three some leaves had some kind of fungus growth but also had lots of ants on them. The early morning drizzle had washed some leaves clean, but older leaves now had black spots.

While I am not sure about why the leaves have this; the only explaination I found online is
Citrus Whitefly
The citrus whitefly is a tiny white winged insect that is about 1/12 of an inch in length. It is most commonly found feeding on the underside of the tree’s leaves. When the branches are shaken, the Citrus whitefly will rapidly take flight and can be seen fluttering around the tree. In addition to feeding on the citrus tree, the whiteflies also lay their eggs on the underside of the leaves. When the eggs hatch, the juveniles are small oval, almost transparent larva, which attach themselves to the underside of the leaves and begin sucking the sap from the leaves. As a result, the tree’s leaves begin to curl and appear to be covered with a sticky, sooty mold substance.
The mold like substance is actually honeydew that is excreted by the whiteflies because they are not able to metabolize all of the sugars contained in the leaf sap. The honeydew can often be seen dripping from the tree’s leaves and becomes an attractant to other insects such as ants.
More Pictures in the link below


  1. Very interesting indeed. I have a jamun tree in my garden and have never seen anything like this.

  2. Wonderful observation! Never heard nor seen something like this before.