Thursday, August 20, 2009

Downy mildew

Downy mildew (Phytopthora infestans DeBy.), the cause of the late blight of potatoes, will attack tomatoes during cool and very moist weather, which greatly favors its development. Such outbreaks sometimes occur to a limited extent in New England and serious losses are reported on the winter crop in southern California, but the disease has never been troublesome in other sections of the country, as it cannot develop in dry or hot weather. It affects the tomato as it does the potato, forming on the leaves dark, discolored spots, which spread rapidly under favorable conditions, killing the foliage in a few days. The fruit is also attacked and becomes covered with the mildew-like spore-bearing threads of the fungus. Bordeaux mixture properly applied is an efficient preventive.

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