In the garden, we already have to deal with many pests (aphids, slugs, beetles, etc.) for our shrubs and plantations of all kinds. And unfortunately, as if that were not enough, all sorts of diseases are also lurking in the vegetable garden (mildew, powdery mildew, alternaria, peach blight…), which can leave some vegetable plants and fruit trees in a bad state.
This is particularly the case of cryptogamic diseases that deposit their pathogenic spores everywhere if nothing is done to stop the advance of the disease with classic fungicide plant protection products or one of those good old grandmother’s decoctions sprayed to fight the fungi that spread to all parts of the plant. Nevertheless, a disease in a plantation is always hard on the plants (and the gardeners!). So, discover some gardener’s tips and tricks to avoid diseases in the vegetable garden.
And in this regard, there is no need to use chemicals in your crops! You can save your harvest with a few good gestures, common sense and environmentally friendly products.
Table of Contents
1) A few basic steps to avoid diseases in the vegetable garden
To ensure good air and sun circulation inside the plants, it is crucial to always make sure to space the plants well and to prune the stems as well as the leaves that are sticking out. This will create conditions that are less conducive to the development of a fungal disease. Also, whether you have had a disease or not, practicing crop rotation is crucial. This will not impoverish the soil, but also, and more importantly, will not allow a virus or fungus to proliferate on the same plant year after year. Therefore, avoid keeping the same plantation on a plot of land more than two years in a row. Finally, if diseases appear in the garden, remove the parts and leaves affected by grey rot or brown spots as soon as the first symptoms appear. Then, remember to burn dead leaves and disinfect pruning tools used on a diseased plant with rubbing alcohol. This will suppress the bacteria and prevent the spread from the pruning shears.
2) Water at the foot of the plants and not the foliage
For the sake of speed, we can sometimes do a little less well! The leaves of our tomatoes, squash, beans or eggplants tend to be rough. Result: they retain moisture better, which is conducive to the development of the main fungal diseases in the garden that we want to avoid. Whether you use a hose, drip or porous hose, water the base of the plants. Also, avoid watering too late: the soil may stay wet all night. And that’s what microorganisms are waiting for to proliferate!
3) Choose the right varieties and maintain them
First, if a chosen variety turns out to be sick, don’t hesitate to change it next time, even if it means choosing more resistant seedlings. If you live in a cold region, prefer early tomatoes. As for hot regions, avoid high heat by choosing spring and fall/winter varieties for your peas, leeks and spinach. In short, take into account the location of your garden in order to choose the right fruits and vegetables. After that, never neglect watering and fertilizing to keep your seeds vigorous and resistant. An organic fertilizer for example will allow a balanced growth without jolts. Finally, consider natural fortifiers to stimulate the growth of young plants. This includes extracts from plants such as nettles or comfrey.
4) The right products to avoid diseases in the vegetable garden
Doing the right things is one thing. However, getting a helping hand with a few protective products for the garden is never a bad thing.
Horsetail for prevention
The solution with horsetail extract acts against mildew, against powdery mildew, against rust and more generally against diseases linked to parasitic fungi. It is diluted in rain or spring water before spraying it on and under the leaves.
Sulfur for powdery mildew treatment
In powder or liquid form to be diluted, sulfur is a preventive and curative fungicide useful to fight against scab, erinosis, but also powdery mildew. It is simply sprayed on the affected plants to treat them. Be careful, above 28°C, it becomes toxic. And below 15°C, it is better to use copper.
Copper for a shock treatment of mildew
Much better than Bordeaux mixture, copper hydroxide to be sprayed in prevention or every 8 to 10 days in treatment to fight mildew on plants.
I have 30 years of experience and i started this website to see if i could try and share my knowledge to help you.
With a degree a Horticulture BSc (Hons)
I have worked as a horticulture specialist lead gardener, garden landscaper, and of course i am a hobby gardener at home in my own garden.
Please if you have any questions leave them on the article and i will get back to you personally.