Blight is not a disease. It is a symptom of plant disease.
One day, your plant looks lush and healthy. The next day, several leaves are yellow and then turn brown. Stems, flowers, and branches also turn brown and then die. What can cause this sudden, severe damage? It might be blight.
Blight strikes quickly
Blight is what several different plant diseases look like. The initial symptoms appear suddenly and spread very quickly. Leaves, fruit, stems, and flowers can all be affected. The first symptom is tiny lesions on leaf tissue where the bacteria or fungi first enter the plant, usually through small tears. The pathogens may also enter through vulnerable new growth. What starts out looking like leaf spot soon covers entire regions of a plant. Leaves and flowers suddenly lose all their green and turn pale yellow (chlorosis), followed by spotting, browning, withering, and dying.
Blight is common in tomatoes and potatoes (nightshade family) and in apples and pears (pome fruits). Ornamental plants are not exempt. Here is a list of the most common blight diseases:
How to control blight
Since blight enters plants through wounds and tender new growth, there are three ways you can reduce the likelihood of
occurring in your garden:
These are especially important when temperatures of 75° to 85°F occur along with rain. Pruning and feeding stimulate new growth that cannot defend itself. Also, do not irrigate trees while they are in flower. Monitor plants closely after these conditions have occurred. Remove and destroy any infected tissue, cutting several inches below the infected tissue. Sanitize your pruners with a household cleaner between each cut to reduce the spread of the disease. Fixed copper sprays may provide some protection.
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