Saturday, July 10, 2010

Is This Powdery Mildew?

As the growing season progresses, I'm starting to discover more pests and plant diseases that I've only been reading about until now.  Can someone tell me if this is powdery mildew on my squash leaves, or something else? There are numerous white spots spread all over the leaves.  Also, the whole plant has been getting more yellow-green the last week or two.

(click on all pictures to enlarge and see the spots better)

And what about these white spots on my cucumber leaves?  They look very different from the white spots on the squash leaves. Does anyone know what this is?

And lastly, there are holes on my bean leaves.  I thought the culprit was japanese beetles, but I found a different pest today.  Yellow striped armyworm, I think?


Shawn Ann said...

It looks like it could be powdery mildew. I usually get it around mid summer all over the yard. Stuff like that could cause your plants to yellow and start to die off but so could bugs, or lack of water. It's hard to keep your plants looking nice by this time in the season with all the bugs and diseases.

Momma_S said...

That does look like the very beginnings of powdery mildew. Try to make sure your leaves are in full sun, and have good air circulation. You can apply a copper fungicide (which is organic). The problem with the copper fungicide I was told by my nursery guy is that any new blooms that are sprayed will be sterilized. Now the cucerbits... Have you checked the undersides of the leaves? It could be spider mites if you see spiderweb-like coverage on the underside. Spider mites themselves are really hard to see... If you see the web, remove the leaves and trash to reduce the amount of bugs. They won't kill your plants unless there are TONS of them. Stop that mildew though--it CAN destroy your plants. Keep us posted!

abigail said...

we have a great garden store near us and any time I have a problem I pick off a leaf or capture a bug, take it to them and say, "fix it!" Then they tell me what to do.

It's only my second year gardening so I still need lots of help!

Maybe there is good gardening store near you where you could go and get some advice. They'll probably know what kind of pests other gardeners in your area are dealing with this time of year and know exactly what you're dealing with.

Faith Kolean said...

Try neem oil spray. I use it.

thyme2garden said...

Shawn Ann - I'm just starting to find out that the vegetables need a lot more than my newbie enthusiasm to keep growing well!

* * * * *
momma_s - thanks for the info about copper fungicide. I did some research and started spraying some milk-water solution, but it keeps clogging up my spray bottle, so I'm not sure I can keep up. After I read your comment, I looked under my cucumber leaves, but didn't see any web-like things. I hope my plant can overcome whatever it is.

* * * * *
abigail - that's great that you have a good garden store near you to help out! I haven't found any yet, except for big box garden departments, so I'll have to do some searching. Thanks for the idea!

* * * * *
Faith Kolean - Thank you so much for your info! I'm afraid I don't even know what neem oil spray is, but I'll google it and find out. How long do you apply it before the mildew starts going away?

Momma_S said...

Be careful with the Neem oil. It's a great fungicide, and I like using it, but stopped after I noticed 6 bees floating in the kid's pool... Never seen that before, and haven't seen it since I stopped using Neem.

thyme2garden said...

Momma_S - thanks for the warning about neem oil. I googled it and read a few articles, but it looks like I'll have to do some more research. I was at a big box garden store today and didn't see any neem oil products in the gardening section. Are they hard to come by?

foodgardenkitchen said...

Our local big box Lowe's sells a neem concentrate but we live in a fairly earthy-crunchy place so I don't know if Lowe's stocks "greener" garden supplies in all its stores.

I would think any smaller, independent garden center would stock neem though...

thyme2garden said...

foodgardenkitchen - I'll have to check out Lowe's, as well as any other garden centers I come across. Thanks!

xoxoxo said...

I went thru an entire bottle of Neem with 2 doses. The mold seems to mostly be gone, but the plants havent been reproducing as much since... but maybe Summer is over...or--does Zuchini reproduce a finite number of fruits?
How did they turn out btw? I realize it was 2 months ago.

thyme2garden said...

xoxoxo - oh you bring back sad memories of my zucchini plants. I tried spraying the 10% milk solution for a couple of weeks, but 1)it kept clogging up my spray bottle so it irritated me to no end, and 2)I don't think it worked well at all. I ended up getting ONE good sized zucchini out of my three plants before they all died a slow, moldy death. The white spots shown in the pictures on this post were very mild compared to how bad it got towards the end.

From all I've read, I think zucchini plants can produce lots of fruits (no limit on number) as long as the plants are healthy and the weather is good/warm(70-low 80s).

xoxoxo said...

well that is good to know! Seems zeem extended there life, but the mold may have prevailed in the end. Give zeem a good try next year. I was lazy in my application, documenting the mold instead of fixing it lol

xoxoxo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
thyme2garden said...

Somehow I hoping that I can avoid this mildew/mold problem next year, but it seems like it's a part of life of growing cucurbits. You know what actually worked better for me when my melon plant started showing signs of light powdery stuff, was a solution made with water, baking soda and Dawn dish soap. I might try that on the zucchini next year. I'm a bit cautious about using neem oil, because some people said that it also kills some beneficial insects as well.

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