The Q&A Archives: Squash?cucumber Leaf Fungus

Question: My cucumber and squash plants are developing a gray fungus on the leaves and in a matter of a few days, the whole plant gets it. What is causing it and how do I get rid of it when it first appears? If I cut off a zucchini or squash leaf stem, does that hamper the growth of the balance of the plant? I believe that the plant loses a lot of water when that happens, correct? Thank you for your time and effort regarding this matter.

Answer: Sounds as though your plants have developed the disease called powdery mildew. Powdery mildew is a fungal disease that attacks plants when environmental conditions are right (warm days, cool nights, some humidity) and air circulation is poor. You can help avoid powdery mildew by giving plants the required exposure to sunshine, and plenty of elbow room so there's good air circulation all around them. Remove the affected leaves and stems to keep the disease from spreading, or you can try to stop the spread of the disease with Soap Sheild, a new product introduced by Gardens Alive (5100 Schenely Rd., Lawrenceburg, IN 47025, ph# 812/537-8650). And keep your fingers crossed!

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