Powdery Mildew on Pumpkin Leaves


“Ok gardeners, what is this growing on my pumpkin leaves and how do I treat it organically ?

Photo: Ok gardeners, what is this growing on my pumpkin leaves and how do I treat it organically ?

~Melissa, High School friend via Facebook”

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Your pumpkin is suffering from powdery mildew and can be treated with baking soda.  Baking soda makes an inexpensive control for powdery mildew on plants. The baking soda fungicide is mostly effective as a preventative, offering only minimal benefits after your plants have become infected. Weekly spraying of susceptible plants during humid or damp weather can greatly reduce the incidence of powdery mildew in your garden.

To control powdery mildew on plants, mix together:

1 tablespoon of baking soda
½ teaspoon of liquid soap
1 gallon of water
Do not store unused mixture. While this recipe has been known to be effective, it can burn the leaves of some plants. It is recommended that you water your infected plants well a couple of days before applying this mixture, and don’t apply it in full sun. Try on a small area first, to test the plant’s response before spraying the entire plant.
Some recipes also recommend applying 1 tablespoon of ultralight horticultural oil to the mixture. The oil coats and smothers the fungi. The soap is added to help the mix spread and cling to the leaf surface. Be sure to apply to lower leaf surfaces as well.

Researchers are still studying the effects of using a baking soda mixture on other fungal diseases such as: black spot, rust and anthracnose.

 

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© Mertie Mae Botanics LLC and Horticulture Talk!, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Mertie Mae Botanics LLC and Horticulture Talk! with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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