Cucumbers and Bell Peppers - Knowledgebase Question

Cleveland, Oh
Avatar for domichuck
Question by domichuck
August 31, 2010
I watered my garden this morning and my cucumbers looked fine when I went out in my garden later on this evening I noticed yellow spots on some of leaves that weren't there this morning can you tell me what this is and how do I get rid of this problem. When my bell peppers get to less than half of their harvesting size they begin to rot on the bottom is there any way I can prevent this.

Answer from NGA
August 31, 2010
What you describe on your bell peppers sounds like blossom end rot, a physiological condition caused by a lack of calcium at the growing tip of the fruit. While your soil may have adequate calcium, fluctuations in soil moisture content from dry to wet really increase the incidence of blossom end rot. The damage occurs as cells die at the tip of the fruit. In time (and as the fruit grows) the spots enlarge and turn black. So, by the time you see it, the damage actually has already occurred some time back. Remedies include: having a soil test to make sure calcium levels are adequate, adding organic matter to a sandy soil to increase its moisture holding capacity, keeping plants evenly moist, especially during the development of the first fruits (mulch helps maintain soil moisture), and spraying plants with a Blossom End Rot spray (contains calcium) which can usually be purchased from your local garden center. The peppers are still edible. Just cut away the affected portion. The yellow spots on your cucumber leave may be sunscald (water droplets in hot sunshine can cause sunscald), or they may be the first symptoms of a fungal disease. If you suspect a fungus, Ortho Multi-Purpose Fungicide is safe to use in vegetable gardens. Be sure to apply according to label directions.

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