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What is the black stuff on a leaf?


This week we have a TPL Kids website visitor who may have looked at some leaves (before getting covered in snow), and discovered a black substance on the leaves. Now, we don’t have the leaf the TPL Kids website visitor is inquiring about, so we can’t analyze it, but we do have an idea of what it could be.


An article from the University of Massachusetts (UofM) Amherst may have an answer, as their article describes a black substance on leaves. The substance the TPL Kids website visitor saw could have been sooty mold. According to UofM, sooty mold is a dark colored fungus that grows on honeydew extracted by piercing sucking insects or on substance exuded from leaves of certain plants.

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