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Mildew on cucurbits

Symptoms

The first sign of mildew is a white powdery coating on the leaves that, if left, leads to a distorted, stunted plant, an inedible crop and even dieback.
Find it on: marrows, courgettes, pumpkins, squash
Time to act: summer, autumn, winter

Overview

The white powdery coating on a curcubit's leaves is made up of spreading fungal spores. This affects the plant's performance, with growth, flowering and fruiting all being adversely affected. In extreme cases, the mildew can lead to dieback and even kill a plant. Since there are separate fungal species that affect different plants, an attack on your curcubits won't lead to a garden epidemic. Powdery mildew and powdery mildew on roses are similar problems, with similar solutions.
Solution
The first sign of mildew is a white powdery coating on the leaves that, if left, leads to a distorted, stunted plant, an inedible crop and even dieback.
Organic
Healthy plants are less susceptible, so make sure they are well spaced and have good air circulation around them. Mulch the area to lock moisture in the ground and give plants a regular drink. The moment mildew is seen, immediately prune out and destroy the affected leaves.
Chemical
Use an all-purpose feed rather than one high in nitrogen, which will generate soft new growth that's more prone to infection. Spray with myclobutanil.



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Talkback: Mildew on cucurbits
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janeil 24/11/2011 at 15:27

I have grown cucumbers for the last two years but this year I have bought two cucumbers which I planted into a tub in my greenhouse but after about a week they started to wilt and die. I dug them up and found that the roots were rotting and there were small grubs all over the roots. What is causing this and is there anything I can do about it?