The Q&A Archives: Texas Root Rot

Question: How do we control Texas Root Rot?

Answer: Texas Root Rot is a fungus (Phymatotrichum omnivorum) that thrives in alkaline, low-fertility soil, like yours in Yuma. There's no way to get rid of it short of sterilizing your soil, but even that's not a permanent solution. It hits hardest whenthe weather's hot (when isn't it hot in Yuma?).<br><br>The best way to deal with Texas Root Rot is to minimize its effects by beefing up the biological diversity of your soil with compost, manures, and other organic matter. The microbes in healthy soil compete with fungi and cut down on outbreaks. Plant resistant crops, such as members of the cucumber family (including squash, melons, and pumpkins) in the warmest part of the growing season, and susceptible crops (most everything else) in winter and spring, while the soil is relatively cool and discourages growth of the fungus. <br><br>Your local extension (ph# 329-2150) should be able to give you information on soil improvement and composting in your arid region. Hope this helps!

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