When and where does powdery mildew occur?
Powdery mildew is a fungal disease that affects both ornamental and useful plants. Plants that are weakened due to a previous illness or unfavorable site conditions are particularly at risk. The parasite occurs most frequently on the following plants:
- Indian thistles
- Spindle bushes
- Maple trees
- Apple trees
- Identifying and combating powdery mildew on zucchini plants
- Rosemary - what to do if there is powdery mildew?
- What helps against powdery mildew on a magnolia?
If the powdery mildew has found a host plant, its infestation is usually noticeable on the shoots and leaves. Here, depending on the species, the pest penetrates the leaf or simply sucks the nutrients and water out of the plant. Often times this causes the plant to die without your intervention.
Powdery mildew (Erysiphaceae)
Powdery mildew is a hose fungus that is popularly referred to as a fair-weather fungus. Why? Because this type of mildew prefers warm, dry climates. In good conditions, the pest spreads explosively. Otherwise it multiplies through insects and the wind. Powdery mildew only appears on the upper side of the leaf. This shows a white coating that you can easily wipe off with your finger. Although this species does not penetrate the plant, it still draws nutrients and water from it with the help of suction attachments.
Downy mildew (Peronosporaceae)
The counterpart to powdery mildew is therefore referred to as bad weather mushroom and lives up to its name with its preference for humid, humid climates. The egg fungus, which is actually a type of algae, eats its way into the plant and causes great damage there. Externally, this is noticeable by a gray-blue film on the underside of the leaves.
Damage to the plant
- Discoloration of the leaves
- The leaves dry out
- Curling up the leaves
- weak growth
- dry fruits
- burst fruits
- Plant death
Fight powdery mildew
A powdery mildew infestation that is recognized too late or is not treated leads in most cases to the death of the plant. In any case, the pest greatly reduces the appearance. The simplest solution, given the quick and reliable effect, would be to use a chemical fungicide. However, when you consider the long-term effects of such treatment, it quickly becomes clear how harmful such agents are. On the one hand, your plant itself takes a lot of damage. If it is a fruit-bearing plant, it can no longer be consumed after the chemical treatment for health reasons. In addition, rainfall washes the toxins into the soil and spreads throughout your garden. This also affects other plants and animals that prove to be quite useful in the local biotope.Fortunately, there are many ways to remove powdery mildew in a natural, environmentally friendly way:
Powdery mildew has an easy time of it when the plant is already weakened due to an unsuitable location. Therefore, you should already consider the requirements when planting. A strong plant can self-sufficiently prevent a mild infestation. Sufficient planting distance is very important so that there is still good air circulation.
The following solutions can be produced inexpensively and are also completely environmentally friendly:
- Milk (mix ratio 1: 9 with water)
- Soda (dissolve 1 packet in 2 L water with around 10 ml oil)
- Garlic (brew 1 clove in 1 L boiling water)
- Field horsetail (choose to infuse 300 g fresh or 30 g dried field horsetail in a ratio of 1: 5 with hot water)
Would you like to make the fight against powdery mildew as effortless as possible? Then leave it to predators like
- Parasitic wasps
- or lace flies
the work. Either you lure the beneficial insects into the garden yourself or you can buy a population from specialist shops. The predators do not harm your plant itself.