What's Bugging You? How To Treat Powdery Mildew

What is Powdery Mildew? Powdery Mildew is a common disease on both outdoor and indoor plants; caused by the fungus Erysiphe cichorearum. Powdery Mildew is very easy to identify as it produces white powdery spots on the leaves, flowers and stems of plants. Certain conditions allow for the fungus to inoculate and spread such as overcrowding, poor light and high humidity. Insects such as aphids can be a vector for the fungus as well.


The powdery spots on the plants are filled with asexual spores which left untreated will release and spread to other plants. On average it takes 3-7 days for the spores to spread and inoculate new plant tissues.


How to Treat Powdery Mildew? Common treatments include sulphur or fungicides however there are easy ways to control powdery mildew at home on your own. Upon discovering powdery mildew on your plant the first thing you should always do is isolate it from other plants. Powdery Mildew can spread very easily and it is best to avoid that risk. Once isolated any severely infected leaves are best removed. The most effective treatment is to spray the plant down with a 10% diluted milk solution. Powdered milk is often easier to work with to mix this solution. After spraying isolate the plant for 7 days. Within those 7 days any spores that spread and left the original infection site will have inoculated and will be noticeable. After 7 days with no new powdered spots the plant can be taken out of isolation.

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