Eggplant Wilt Control: Eggplant Wilt Treatment

Verticillium wilt is a common pathogen in many plant varieties. It has more than 300 host families, including edible, ornamental and evergreen plants. Verticillium wilt is devastating to the crop. It can survive for years in the soil and overwinter even in regions with harsh climates. Plants of the belladonna family, such as tomatoes, eggplants and potatoes, are affected. Symptoms are similar to those of many other diseases, so it is important to know them completely and make an accurate diagnosis.

Symptoms of Verticillium wilt of eggplant

The wilt of eggplant verticillium is caused by a fungus that lives and overwinters in the soil for years. It is found not only in acorns, but also in cucurbits, conifers, grasses, flowering plants and even trees. The disease attacks vascular tissue, disrupting the movement of nutrients and water. Over time, the plant atrophies, stops producing usable fruit and eventually dies. The plant material is still highly contagious and must be destroyed instead of being sent to the compost heap.

Yellow and faded eggplants are the first sign that

something is wrong. Young plants atrophy with leaves that are too small and yellowish-green. The disease can splash on the leaves, which means that those closest to the ground line are the first to show signs of infection. The leaves wilt at the edges, curl inward and eventually turn brown and dry. The disease will spread to other leaves and stems, and eventually to the root system.

The fungus produces a toxin that fattens the vascular system, preventing the movement of water. Unlike fusarium rot, yellowing and bacterial wilt, verticillium prefers to stay in temperate regions where the soil is cool. Vascular streaks on leaves and stems can help differentiate verticillium wilt from other common diseases.

Prevention of vertical wilting of eggplants

Annual cleaning is an effective way to reduce the risk of reinfection. Old plant material is a host for the pathogen and must be destroyed. Crop rotation can be beneficial, especially with belladonna hosts. Keep weeds out of the area, as some are also hosts for the disease.

As always, avoid contaminating fields by washing tires and cleaning tools and other equipment. Solarization of an area of soil can also control the fungus.

If possible, obtain resistant varieties. A «V» will be marked on the seed package. Classic and Epic varieties seem to have good disease resistance.

Treatments for wilted eggplants

Unfortunately, there are no easy-to-use chemicals to spray on your lawn bed or field. After testing to ensure that the disease is indeed caused by verticillium, certified applicators are required to handle the recommended chemicals. A soil fumigant is the most common application.

The fungicide, benomyl, has proven useful in reducing graft contamination, but it is only useful initially and cannot protect the roots after the plant has entered the contaminated soil.

Eggplants with Verticillium wilt are difficult to treat. Preventive measures such as resistant varieties, sanitary practices, soil sterilization and disposal of host plants are even better.

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