Helpful Tips from Your Local Greenhouse
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ARTICLE #1 [SPRING]:
How to deal with mould: Keeping your plants safe and healthy
Whether you’re a brand new gardener or a total veteran, powdery mildew is a plant problem that we all face sooner or later. Your plants are growing beautifully until suddenly… they’re not. Once powdery mildew is visible on the tops of your leaves, you’ve likely had an issue with mould for some time. While mould isn’t likely to kill your plants, it certainly isn’t ideal, either aesthetically or for the long-term health of your plants. With a little planning, you can either treat or prevent powdery mildew.
Host Specific Strains
The first thing that you should know about dealing with plant mould or powdery mildew is that this fungus is plant-specific.
If you’re dealing with mildew on one plant, it won’t spread to other plants in your garden. However, if you already have mould it probably means that your garden is creating ideal conditions for the mildew to live.
Powdery mildew spores spread and multiply in the spring when conditions are best. They especially flourish in damp or humid climates. If your plants are too close together without good air circulation, they’re probably at risk for powdery mildew.
You can also inadvertently introduce mildew into your garden when buying new plants, so be sure to inspect any of your purchases before buying. Check the underside of leaves and always buy the healthiest plants available.
The easiest way to treat your plants is with a fungicide. Plenty of options are available at your local gardening store. Repeat weekly or biweekly as needed.
Prune your plants to rid them of all infected areas. Thin out overgrowth and watch your plants closely.
Keep in mind that mould targets young growth, so be sure to watch new leaves and avoid fertilization until your plants are mould-free.
Always water your plants at the soil to avoid creating the damp conditions on leafy growth where mould will grow rapidly.
Powdery mildew is an annoying pest, but it doesn’t mean your garden is hopeless. Remember that affected plants will be a little weaker than those that have not been exposed, and as such must be treated with care.