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Spots on your pumpkins? The following information will explain what it may be.
Nashville, Ark. – With fall fast approaching and hopes of cooler temperatures pumpkins
are a fall favorite for many. Bacterial spot of pumpkin caused by the bacterium Xanthomonas campestris pv. cucurbitae, can cause more than 50% yield losses in severely infested fields. Cucumber, pumpkin,
summer and winter squash, watermelon, and gourds are all susceptible.
The first symptoms on leaves are small yellow spots. The spots become small, dark,
angular lesions surrounded by a yellow halo. The centers of the lesions become dry
and translucent with age. As the lesions expand, they follow the veins making large
necrotic wedges on the leaves.
However, the most damaging symptoms appear on the fruit. Fruit lesions begin as small,
slightly sunken, circular spots, 1/16 to 1/18 inch in diameter. As the lesions enlarge,
the cuticle and epidermis crack. Larger lesions may have a scabby appearance with
tan, raised blisters. Saprophytic fungi often colonize the older lesions, giving them
a pinkish-white or green color depending on the species of saprophyte involved. The
unsightliness of the lesions diminishes the marketability of the fruit as well as
leading to significant rot in the field and in storage. The pathogen is seed-borne
and can also survive in crop residue. Bacterial spot is more of a problem during high
temperatures coupled with rainy weather or overhead irrigation. Inoculum is splashed
onto young fruit before it develops its protective waxy cuticle.
Good sanitation and crop rotation with non-cucurbit crops help limit inoculum in the
field. Only clean seed should be used; therefore, it is advisable to not save seed
from a previous crop. Copper fungicides may be applied during early formation and
fruit expansion to protect developing fruit. Once bacterial lesions are observed on
mature fruit there is nothing to be done except to practice ruthless culling of diseased
For more information, you can visit www.uaex.uada.edu, or send an email to email@example.com. Howard County Extension office is still working and is there for all the residents
in Howard County during this time.
By Samantha Kroll County Extension Agent - AgricultureThe Cooperative Extension ServiceU of A System Division of Agriculture
Media Contact: Samantha Kroll County Extension Agent - Agriculture U of A Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service 421 N. Main Nashville AR 71852 (870) 845-7517 firstname.lastname@example.org
The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative
action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need
materials in another format, please contact your County Extension office (or other
appropriate office) as soon as possible. Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay. The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension
and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity,
sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran
status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative
Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.