The Q&A Archives: Brown spots on rudbekia (black eyed Susans)

Question: My rudbekias are coming up and have multipled well since last season. They're nowhere close to blooming but the leaves already have brown spots like the ones they got at the end of the summer last year. What can I do to keep this from happening and what can I do now that it's already happened? Thank you.

Answer: Leaf spots are caused by fungi or bacteria. Brown or black spots and patches may be either ragged or circular, with a water soaked or yellow-edged appearance. Insects, rain, dirty garden tools, or even people can help its spread.

To control, remove infected leaves when the plant is dry. Leaves that collect around the base of the plant should be raked up and disposed of. Avoid overhead irrigation if possible; water should be directed at soil level. For fungal leaf spots, use a recommended fungicide according to label directions. Best wishes with your plants!

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