Fungicides are chemicals or organisms that kill or inhibit fungi and fungal spores. Since fungal diseases are responsible for more agricultural losses than any other cause, knowing how to fight these organisms is important.
Fungicides work in one of three ways:
Sulfur is a common component of most fungicides, as are neem, rosemary, and jojoba oil. Beneficial bacterium (Bacillus sabtilis) and fungus (Ulocladium oudemansii) are also added. Fungal plant diseases include:
Unlike most of these fungal diseases, Fusarium and Verticillium wilts cannot be controlled with fungicides.
While the use of fungicides can be effective, prevention is a better course of action. One way to reduce the chance of fungal infections is to plant resistant varieties. Another way to avoid fungal infestations is to improve air flow with good pruning, avoid watering from above, which may splash fungal spores onto nearby plants, and by removing and destroying any diseased plant tissue. Ensuring good drainage is another way to reduce the need for fungicides.
You can grow a surprising amount of food in your own yard. Ask me how!