Late Blight Information Anderson SC

It is very important that gardeners in Anderson in the affected region (Northeast) check their tomato and potato plants for symptoms at least weekly and take appropriate measures. This will protect fellow gardeners as well as local farmers.

Wickiser Clinic-Chiropractic
(864) 642-4908
3618 E River St
Anderson, SC

Data Provided by:
HealthSource of Seneca
(864) 882-6395
1741 Blue Ridge Blvd
Seneca, SC

Data Provided by:
Edgar Leland Talbert, MD
(864) 224-9624
1028 S Main St
Anderson, SC
Specialties
General Practice
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Med Univ Of Sc Coll Of Med, Charleston Sc 29425
Graduation Year: 1975

Data Provided by:
Audrey Sg Jones
(864) 224-0822
1100 W Franklin St
Anderson, SC
Specialty
Family Practice

Data Provided by:
Edmond Rhodes Jordan, MD
(864) 654-6800
Anderson, SC
Specialties
General Practice
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Med Univ Of Sc Coll Of Med, Charleston Sc 29425
Graduation Year: 1983

Data Provided by:
Electric City Animal Clinic
(864) 225-0015
1403 Pearman Dairy Rd
Anderson, SC

Data Provided by:
Spine Care
(828) 482-9974
4 Commons Blvd
Seneca, NC

Data Provided by:
Chris Boggs
(864) 224-0822
1100 W Franklin St
Anderson, SC
Specialty
Family Practice

Data Provided by:
Edgar Leland Talbert
(864) 224-9624
1028 South Main Street
Anderson, SC
Specialty
General Practice

Data Provided by:
Susan E Miranda
(864) 512-1475
2000 E Greenville St
Anderson, SC
Specialty
Family Practice

Data Provided by:
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Late Blight Information

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I heard there’s a disease spreading this year called late blight that affects tomato and potato crops. Should I be worried?

Answer: Late blight is a very destructive and infectious disease caused by the Phytophthora infestans fungus. It affects tomatoes and potatoes. Late blight caused Ireland’s Great Famine (1845–1852).

Late blight has been present in the United States for more than 100 years, but it is occurring this year earlier and more widespread than ever, and it’s affecting both home gardens and commercial growers. Cases are popping up mostly in the northeastern quarter of the country, particularly in the Mid-Atlantic and New England. Reports indicate that a southern wholesaler distributed infected tomato plants to big-box stores and garden centers from Ohio to Maine. The brand name is Bonnie Plants. Very wet conditions in this region have exacerbated the problem.

The disease is not carried in seeds, so if you started your own seedlings you can rest somewhat assured. If plants you bought did not originate from this wholesaler, you may also be somewhat assured. However, the disease is very contagious. Spores can travel by wind up to four miles, land on a plant and infect it. So if a neighbor’s plants have the disease, yours may end up with it too; healthy plants sharing shelf space with diseased plants may easily contract the disease.

It is very important that gardeners in the affected region (Northeast) check their tomato and potato plants for symptoms at least weekly and take appropriate measures. This will protect fellow gardeners as well as local farmers.

Symptoms
Look for brown legions on tomato stems and nickel-size olive green or brown spots on leaves. The leaf spots start out very small. White fungal growth appears if the weather is humid or wet. Firm brown spots appear on fruit.

If the legions have a yellow border and appear on the bottom portion of the plant, the problem is more likely early blight or Septoria leaf spot.

View infected-tomato pictures.

On potato plants, look for black lesions on leaves and stems. White fungus appears at the lesion’s edge in humidity, especially on leaf undersides. Legions turn brown when they dry up, and the white fungus disappears. Infected potato tubers have brown or purple lesions with a reddish grainy rot in the potato flesh beneath them.

Treatment
Remove symptomatic plants. Seal them in a plastic bag and throw them in the trash. Alternatively, bury the plants, making sure to dig deep enough that they won’t sprout back. Do not put the plants in your compost pile because the spores will continue to spread. Clean your tools and hands thoroughly after pulling infected plants.

Fungicides can be used to prevent infection. They must be applied before symptoms appear and be reapplied frequently. For fungicide guidelines, click here . Organic gardeners and farmers have few options for prevention. They may use copper fungicides, but copper is not very effective on late blight.

This year the problem seems limited to the Northeast, but if you’re concerned about late blight wherever you are, check with your local agricultural extension office to learn if cases have been identified.

Sources: Cornell Cooperative Extension; UMass Extension; Massachusetts Introduced Plants Outreach Project

Click here to read more from UMass about late blight.

Click here for more information from Cornell.

 

From Horticulture Magazine