Symptoms of Eggplant Early Blight – How to Treat Eggplant Early Blight

Early eggplant blight can ruin your fall eggplant crop. When the infection becomes severe, or when it persists from year to year, it can significantly reduce the crop. Know the signs of late blight and how to prevent and treat it before it attacks your garden.

What is mildew?

Late blight is a fungal infection caused by the fungus Alternaria solani . Although late blight is one of the most common diseases of tomatoes, it also affects eggplants, potatoes and peppers. Late blight usually results from contamination by infected plants or plant debris, or by plants too close together without sufficient air circulation.

Symptoms of Alternaria in eggplant

One of the first signs of the onset of eggplant blight is the presence of brown spots on the leaves. Once they appear, they grow rapidly and develop a pattern of concentric rings, as well as a yellow ring around the edges of

the brown one. These spots will eventually fuse together and completely destroy the leaves. The spots begin to develop on the lower leaves and spread throughout the plant.

The disease can also affect the aubergines themselves. For example, when the leaves die, the fruit becomes more vulnerable to sunburn. Fruits may also begin to develop dark spots due to infection, which can also cause eggplants to fall prematurely.

Eggplant storage with mildew

Eggplant early blight is very difficult to control once it has started. The spores of the Alternaria fungus travel with the wind, so the infection can easily spread. The best way to beat it is prevention, but if your eggplant has been beaten, there are some things you can do to avoid harvesting it:

  • Remove as much affected foliage as possible.
  • Dilute the plants even more to allow for better air circulation. Infection develops in moist conditions.
  • Keeping weeds out of the garden can also increase air circulation.
  • Increase fertilization to promote better fruit growth.
  • For severe early mildew infections, or repeated infections from one year to the next, consider using a copper spray.

Eggplant blight control

When growing eggplants in the garden, it is helpful to be aware of the risk of late blight and to take steps to minimize the chances of an infection taking root.

Space your plants properly to allow air and water to circulate only to the roots, keeping the leaves dry. When plants are growing and fruit is beginning to develop, remove the three or four branches from the lower leaves. Use fertilizers to strengthen the plants and control weeds for good air circulation.

Early blight of eggplants can become an insidious infection, but with good management you can avoid or minimize it while still getting your crop.

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