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Biotic diseases of vegetables result from infection by a living organism such as a
fungus, bacteria, virus, or nematode. A susceptible plant, favorable environment,
and a plant disease causal agent (pathogen) must be present over a period of time
for a disease to occur.
Some diseases of vegetables are specific to a particular crop, whereas others may
attack multiple vegetable crops. There are several important virus diseases of vegetables.
Many viruses are transmitted by a variety of insects. Based on that information, insect
management can impact the incidence and severity of several virus diseases.
Nematodes can often be a problem on vegetables that are grown in sandy soil conditions. These
worm-like pathogens feed on the roots of our vegetables.
Abiotic diseases (non-infectious) result from a stress imposed by non-living agents
such as adverse environmental growing conditions. These factors include such things
as temperature and moisture extremes, nutrient deficiencies and toxicities, and damage
from crop production steps.
Vegetables that become stressed from environmental extremes are more vulnerable to
the biotic diseases. Because of this fact, growers should focus their attention to
providing all of the necessary environmental components to promote plant vigor, rather
than relying exclusively on chemical disease management.
bean mosaic virus
leaf spot on turnip
tomato spotted wilt virus
mosaic virus on squash
Caused by a fungus that can live in the soil for extended time periods. This fungus
attacks the roots and can "plug" the food and water transport stream. Different "races"
of the fungus exist. Growing resistant varieties is the best method of management.
Internal reddish-brown discoloration of the stem is diagnostic. Entire plants can
Caused by a soil-borne fungus. Plants are attacked at the root collar. Plants wilt
Caused by a fungus that attacks the lower stem and roots. Often associated with poorly
Caused by a nematode. These animals feed on the roots causing them to be debilitated.
Growing resistant varieties can be effective in management.
Caused by a bacteria. Affects the leaves and fruit. This bacterium can be seed-borne.
Spreads from plant to plant by splashing water.
Caused by a fungus. Affects the leaves and fruit.
Various diseases. Symptoms variable from "bumps" to color blotches to leaf and fruit
deformities. Many are insect transmitted. Some can be seedborne. Viruses can overwinter
in weeds and other plants.
Caused by a fungus. Cucurbits primarily impacted by this disease. Causes a fruit rot
and stem/leaf lesions. Entire plants can be killed.
Caused by a fungus. Produces white "fuzzy" patches of mold like growth on the leaves.
This fungus can be seedborne. Germination of spores are favored by humid conditions.
This is a minor foliar disease of brassicas caused by a fungus. Produces circular
spots up to ¼ in diameter. Spots are gray to gray green in color. Commonly infected
plants include; turnips, mustards, and Chinese cabbage.
Caused by a calcium imbalance. Often produces a necrotic area on the blossom end.
Affects peppers, tomatoes, and cucurbits.
Caused by insufficient calcium. Lettuce and celery often impacted by this abiotic
MP154 - Arkansas Plant Disease Products Guide
Current product information and management options for plant diseases in Arkansas
Fact sheet on common tomato diseases and disorders and their management