June 11, 2013

Avoiding Summer Fungus

Fungal diseases can be a real problem in many summer gardens, especially in wet, humid areas of the country or in places that get summer rain and damp, cool nights. In places like the Pacific Northwest or the humid Southeast, fungal issues like blight and powdery mildew are common. They are not always deadly to plants but they can become a real problem that spreads quickly, especially as moisture persists. Luckily, there are a few simple, organic techniques that can stop the spread of these fungal diseases and keep them from coming back! Keep reading to learn more. Blight can harm many plants but can especially damage a tomato crop, spreading quickly from plant to plant and taking out the whole harvest. It appears as little black splotches on the stems and leaves of plants that grow to cover the entire plant, turning it black and wilted. Blight will kill a plant, if left untreated.

fix tomato blight

Powdery mildew is a small, white spotted fungus that can grow on many different types of leaves but tends to especially plaque squash plants, including summer squash, winter squash, zucchini and pumpkins. As it spreads, it blocks the plant’s ability to photosynthesize, causing plant stress and a lack of energy and vigor.

fix powdery mildew

Treatment: If you catch a fungal disease early, and your plants are bushy and otherwise healthy, you can try just removing the affected foliage to minimize spreading. However, that is unlikely to eliminate the issue completely. In the past, we have seen good results using our Penetrate Liquid Biotiller product as a topical treatment for fungal diseases. Though it is not registered for this use, it works well as a foliar spray. The powerful beneficial bacteria in Penetrate work to drive out (and keep out) harmful fungi. However, now we have a new product that is especially formulated to combat all types of fungal issues on plants.

organic fungcide

Citral Blast an organic fungicide that works to eliminate common fungal diseases, mold and rust in all types of plants! It works wonders in the vegetable garden as well as ornamentals, roses and fruit trees. The organic ingredients are formulated for regular use, as needed, for both disease prevention and treatment. They are safe for kids and pets and work with the cycles of nature to help beneficial organisms out-compete harmful ones. Citral Blast works with The Soil Food Web (and our Soil Solutions products) to keep harmful fungi at bay. You can order a concentrated form of Citral Blast online today! To apply it, you just mix it with water in a spray bottle and spray it on plants. Repeat regularly or just as needed. Do you have other methods to combat or prevent fungal growth in the garden? Do you have specific questions about these issues? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. Learn more about Citral Blast here.