kierag
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Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:48 pm
Location: beaumont, tx

squash and zuccini

I had 2 problems. They got a fungus on them and the worm got in my roots. I pulled all of them up and I am ready to plant more. But my question is ???
Where did the fungus come from? Is it in the dirt? Can I replant in the same spot? What would you do? My garden looks empty without my plants.

gumbo2176
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Location: New Orleans

That fungus is likely powdery mildew. This crops up a lot with squash and cucumbers but can happen to many more plants. Some causes are poor air circulation among the plants, watering from above, high humidity and wet conditions. Some folks here use a home made treatment consisting of 1 tbsp. Baking Soda, 1/2 tsp. of liquid soap and a gallon of water. Mix this up and spray the plant. If only a few leaves are affected, simply cut them away and toss in the trash, not in the compost pile because it is a fungus and will spread from there.


Your other problem sounds like Squash Vine Borers. They are very hard to control and one of the reasons I give up on squash once they attack. I recently pulled over a dozen squash plants due to their infestation. There's lots of home treatments that have failed to work for me in preventing them. Google them to see what I'm talking about. Nasty little buggers.

Many folks here recommend a SVB resistant squash that is a winter type but I like the zucchini and yellow crooknecks more than most others. The winter squash have stems that aren't hollow like the summer squash so it's harder for them to establish in the stems. At least, that's my understanding.

kierag
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Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:48 pm
Location: beaumont, tx

I tried the baking soda and soap last week. It killed most of my leaves. So I just pulled the plants up. With that and the other 2 problems I figured there was no way I could fix anything. I have another small garden with watermelon and a few zucchini. I looked this morning and they are just getting the mold on them. I will try to remove these leaves, because they are so few. Maybe I sprayed the plants 2 much. Do you just lightly spray instead of soak?

DoubleDogFarm
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There's this debate over soap vs detergent. Which one did you use?

Is the worm in the stem or root? If in the root you may try mixing coffee grounds in the soil around your plants.


Eric

kierag
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Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:48 pm
Location: beaumont, tx

i used dawn liquid soap. I will try the coffee grounds. thank you

gumbo2176
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kierag wrote:i used dawn liquid soap. I will try the coffee grounds. thank you

A lot of folks in here will only use bar soap instead of things like Dawn since it is a detergent soap. It is recommended that you spray a small section to see if it will adversely affect the plants before going full bore with the spray.

If the pests were in the stem and looked like maggots, that is the squash vine borer and they are nasty little critters. I had one stem that I cut out to inspect and it had about 8 borers in a foot of stem. I had a heavy infestation that was killing all my plants, so they came out.

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Runningtrails
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Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:52 am
Location: Barrie, Ontario,Canada

I think it helps prevent the vine borers if you can plant your squash in a different place each year. Rotate the veggies. I have never had a problem with them and I have grown the squash in a new place each year for three years now.

I have read so many posts from people that have lost their entire squash crop. I'm a little nervous this year. I have some old, rare heirloom squash growing and I will be devistated if something like that happens to it! The seeds are impossible to replace! Last year I grew a couple of little squash near the location of this year's bed, about 15' from it, so I'm a bit nervous about SVB. I'm thinking about moving just a few plants to a completely different field, just so I will get a few squash if they get infected.

I don't worry about a few powdery mildewed leaves. I just leave it. It doesn't seem to kill the leaves or damage the harvest.

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rainbowgardener
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Rt - you garden in Canada. It's a lot different than most of us. The long cold winters help keep down a lot of insect pests and diseases. For me the powdery mildew will kill my squash eventually, though not real fast. (On the other hand my huge old lilac tree gets PM every summer, but it never really bothers it, it is just a cosmetic issue.) You probably have less trouble with SVB's due to your climate also.

But yes, a worm in the roots would be different from the vine borers which attack the stem above ground. I know there are wireworms and nematodes that attack roots, but I don't know much about them.

And yes, Dawn is a detergent not a true soap. A lot of people report that detergents burn plant leaves (depending I suppose on the concentration used and the plant and other factors about how applied, etc). If you try again use soap, which would be something like Dr Brunners, Murphy's oil soap, Ivory soap powder (the kind that says 99 99/100 pure) or shavings from a bar of soap in water.
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