|My husband and I grow and sell pumpkins but have had trouble with powdery mildew on the vines. What can be done to prevent and treat this problem?
|Powdery mildew is a fungal disease. Warm temperatures and dew favor its development. You can help your plants avoid infection by removing some of the vines to increase air circulation among the plants, and by directing water around the base of the plants rather than sprinkling water overhead on the fruits and leaves. Early in the season you can cut or pinch off a few of the vines without harming the plant. Wait until some fruits form and then pinch off the ends of the vines. This will increase air circulation and direct the plant's energy into developing fewer, but larger, more flavorful fruit.|