The Q&A Archives: Fungus-wilt In Soil And Vegetables

Question: I have been treating my vegetables for the last two years with Daconil, for fungus and wilt. I keep excellent garden maintanence. I would like another way to help control without the chemical, for obvious reasons. I rotate crops. Also is very near maple tree that seemed to have these black circular spots. Garden is eight years old, and started to have these problems in the last few years. I would appreciate any help in this matter. Vegetables are great in appearance and taste. Is there any way that I can avoid using this chemical, like using raised beds?

Answer: Without knowing the specific problem(s) in question it is difficult to give you an accurate answer. As with many things in gardening, there may be a combination of things that might work. Certainly sanitation and crop rotation are very important, as would be growing resistant varieties wherever they exist and following careful cultivation practices such as never purposely watering the foliage (especiallylate in the day), enhancing air circulation and never planting too close together. Careful attention to optimum watering and plant nutrition can help as generally healthy plants will be less susceptible. Many gardeners also find that maintaining an extremely healthy soil full of organic matter (and microorganisms) from sources such as compost helps plants stay healthier and in some cases can even combat infection. I would also suggest that you consult with your County Extension(424-9485) to identify the problem(s) with certainty and see what specific control recommendations they have based on that information.

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