High temperatures (above 85°F, 29°C) favor the disease, which occasionally causes damage to tomato crops grown in the Central Valley. Controlling tomato southern blight is difficult, but if you’re vigilant, you can manage the disease and grow a crop of healthy tomatoes. Indians. Think Black Krim but more balanced. Cooperative Extension is based at North Carolina's two land-grant institutions, commitment to diversity. Any fruit on the plant becomes watery and rotted. to produce mycelium and sclerotia). This plant disease is serious business; southern blight of tomatoes may be relatively minor but, in some cases, a severe infection can wipe out an entire bed of tomato … Among the vegetable crops affected are tomato, pepper, eggplant, snap bean, Jerusalem artichoke, and occasionally cantaloupe, watermelon, and pumpkin fruit. Tomato Diseases Southern Blight Sclerotium rolfsii Found in warm climates worldwide World Vegetable Center Symptoms Young infected plants wilt suddenly and permanently. White mycelium and tan to reddish-brown, spherical sclerotia of Athelia rolfsii on the stem of a field-grown tomato plant. The southern blight fungus Sclerotium rolfsii, is hard to miss in healthy, green tomato plants. Till the soil deeply at the end of the season and again before transplanting to incorporate any remaining debris thoroughly into the soil. Lesions will initially appear as sunken and slightly yellow areas that later become water-soaked, soft, and star-shaped spots. Clean garden tools immediately after use. Water with a soaker hose or drip irrigation system to keep the foliage as dry as possible. Southern blight causes wilting of cucurbits due to infection on the main stem at the collar region. Removal and burning of residue of affected plants prevents a build up of inoculum. Under moist conditions, white mycelium will typically develop on stem lesions and can sometimes extend several centimeters up the stem of tomato and pepper plants. Southern blight of tomatoes is a fungal disease that often shows up when hot, dry weather is followed by warm rain. Many other plants including annual ornamentals are also susceptible. Figure 5. dry decay of Sweetpotato tuberouS root. Southern blight of tomatoes is a fungal disease that often shows up when hot, dry weather is followed by warm rain. Soil fumigants must be applied days to weeks prior to planting. Wilting symptoms resemble that of Fusarium wilt, but upon careful examination you may find white mycelial growth and mustard like reproductive bodies called sclerotia on the soil and on the stem. Southern blight stem lesion with sclerotia of Athelia rolfsii on a field-grown tomato plant. Late blight does kill tomato plants, and once the killing starts there is no stopping it. Disease development is favored by a combination of hot weather and high soil moisture. Stem cankers at the base of the plant caused by Sclerotiu rolfsii. Southern blight, also known as southern wilt and southern stem rot, is a serious and frequent disease of vegetable crops in North Carolina. The fumigation of soils with broad spectrum chemicals such as chloropicrin and sodium metam sodium can reduce disease incidence, but this strategy is limited by economic considerations. Initially, a brown to black lesion usually develops on the stem near the soil line. Ripening to a deep brownish color, this slicing tomato is worth its keep in any garden. For assistance with a specific problem, contact your local, contact your local. Southern blight of tomato thrives under hot, dry conditions. Cooperative Extension prohibits discrimination and harassment regardless of age, color, disability, family and marital status, gender identity, national origin, political beliefs, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation and veteran status. Southern blight, or basal stem rot as it is sometimes called, most commonly affects tomato, pepper, cucumbers, beans, and cabbage, but it has a very wide host range and can infect many other crops. To me, this fruit is earthy and smokey. Be sure to obtain current information about usage regulations and examine a current product label before applying any chemical. If you know that southern blight has been active in the area, don’t plant a tree there. By: Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer. by Matt Gibson About Southern Blight Tomatoes plants do really well in warm temperatures, and with a helping hand of regular irrigation and fertilization, they are prepared to produce an excellent harvest of big, juicy fruit. N.C. 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