Potato Blight - Perhaps I Should Know Better

01 July 2009 | Posted in Gardening by The Marshalls Family

Potato Blight - Perhaps  I Should Know Better

After a horrid year in 2007 with all the wet weather and a disaster with my salad and maincrop potatoes, I took care last year and sprayed my potatoes with Dithane from mid-June onwards to protect against Potato Blight.  The fact is, unlike many infestations, with Blight, once you’ve got it you’ve got it!  The only thing you can do is forget any chance of a decent crop.

Well tonight I’ll be out spraying for the first time this year.  Why? Because on Sunday, I noticed what might be a few tell tale signs, those premature brown spots on leaves. In hindsight, as Technical Manager, Pat has since told me, I should also have immediately cut off the offending leaves and destroyed them (but not on the compost heap!). Maybe I am just over-reacting, but to make sure I’ll treat all my potatoes with Dithane (Mancozeb).  At just over £1 a treatment it’s peace-of-mind for me.

Keep Up To Date

If you want to know what is happening in agricultural circles you can log on to www.potato.org.uk/blight, which will show you where there are confirmed cases of potato blight throughout Great Britain.  For Northern Ireland, where blight has been something of a problem from early June, you can obtain information from http://www.ruralni.gov.uk/index/crops/potatoes/blight_net.htm or call 02890 382 372 (that’s just Northern Ireland).

The good news is that the current dry weather should slow things down, but followed on by wetter conditions blight could well become a problem. When it’s humid, white mould growth develops on the undersides of the leaves in this light green area as the pathogen emerges from the leaf tissue and produces its air-borne spores. The first symptoms of blight are usually dark brown spots on the leaves often with a lighter green margin.

Comments

09 January 2010 - Sue Wrote:

I had blight last year , can I grow this years potatoes in the same plot?

23 March 2010 - Anthony Edwards Wrote:

Club Root Problem I have been growing veg in my garden now for the past 15 years i have always had a problem with Club Root. i crop rotate as recommended but always get club root on my brasicas i still get quite good results but in very dry weather they wilt very badly I have tried all methods even growing them in 12 in pots separately i have even tried club root resistant varieties i even went 2 years without planting any brasica at all but still get it. i remember my granddad used to dip his seedlings into a white powder? is there anything else i could do to erase this problem?

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