What do you know about mango leave diseases? Do they have a significant impact on livestock and livestock feeding?
Powdery mildew is a common disease on mango plantations around the world. Sail through as we discuss at length on this disease and its consequences.
What is Powdery mildew?
It is a fungal disease caused by the fungus Erysiphe graminis. The fungi live predominantly on the outer surface of the host plant. They obtain food and water by means of haustoria, which are tiny, branched and root-like structures.
The fungus invades a wide range of wild plants, agronomic crops, and cereals. Areas characterized with high humidity and moderate temperatures, often spike the spread of the disease.
Furthermore, it is unique to note that Powdery mildew spores are moved from one area to the other by wind. Such that, an affected field can spread the disease to grazing camps.
Bluegrass is one of the most affected grass species and it constitutes the base of forages. As a consequence, powdery mildew has a direct impact on the availability of feed for grazing animals.
Some of the affected flora
Should one be worried about it?
- I must say yes, as a farmer producing mangoes and rearing livestock, this should be a priority. As the saying goes, "it’s better to be late than sorry." Powdery mildew firstly occurs in isolated places, therefore routine checks on crops or grasses are often a necessity.
- Firstly, with assistance from seed producing companies, one is able to purchase healthy mango seeds which are less susceptible to Powdery mildew. Randomly selected mango seeds could potentially be infected with the fungus.
- Secondly, seeking guidance from specialists on how best to space mangoes in the orchard.
- And finally, studies have shown that continuous use of high-nitrogen fertilizers promulgates dense grass growth, an ideal environment for the disease.
Symptoms of Powdery mildew
- Mycelium usually appears as small patches that are white to greyish and dustily growing. The patches increasingly spread on the affected area.
- Often observed on the leaves, and mango fruits are often not appealing to consume.
- If infected, the leaves instantly become yellowish to brown and later drop off the plant.
How to prevent and control Powdery mildew
- Rotational use of recommended fungicides has proven helpful, as this stifles resistance. Some farming corporations routinely follow a fungicide programs on crops.
- The traditional method of pruning the most affected leaves. Such that pruned plants are well disposed, to stifle recurrent fungi from surviving from one farming season to the other.
- Consult experts to help fight in case of an outbreak in your respective localities.
- Arrange appropriate spacing that allows air circulation in plants of interest as a precaution.
- Depending on the scale of production for example a backyard garden or a commercial farm, it is always advisable to have a disease management guideline, in case of an outbreak.
- The practice of rotational planting of crops helps minimize dominance of Powdery mildew.
To sum it all up, Powdery mildew is a serious concern to a farmer. Therefore, seeking assistance before an outbreak occurs is vital for mangoes in the orchard and grazing livestock.
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