White spots on leaves and dying pepper plant?

thejohnnyjoeMay 7, 2009

Ok, so I haven't looked at the garden in only 3 days and this is what has happened. Everything was fine before and I have an automatic watering system.

My Squash and Melon plants have white spots on leaves. I think it is powdry mildew, but would like your opinions.

Also, one of my bell pepper plants looks pretty bad. Do you know why? And my other bell pepper is starting to look bad. Is it underwatering? I was thinking with the powdry mildew on some that maybe it is something else.

Everything else in the garden is doing great.. Please see the photo link below. Thanks so much for any help.


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I am curious to know about the white spots also but I beleive your pepper just needs some water.


    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 8:42PM
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thepod is probably right about the bell. Regarding the white spots, have you used any pesticides on them (dust maybe)? If not, anything close by that could have gone airborne and hit your plants? If that's also not it, you probably have some type of fungus or disease on them. Immediately flush & replant.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 10:48PM
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Thanks for the replies. I have only used Neem oil in the past to control pests. These white spots look like they probably started low to the ground and worked up. They are thicker on the lower leaves. They have not effected the tomotoes, cucs, peas, etc. plants which are all nearby. I was advised to spray the leaves with neem and I did tonight. When the white spots, which are kind of puffy, were washed, a lot of the leaves are kind of brown under where the white was. I can't think of what could have been airbourne nearby, but you never know. I guess I was thinking it might be Powdery mildew from what searches say.

Do you think it is too late for the pepper plant?

    Bookmark   May 7, 2009 at 11:11PM
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I have an awesome Neem Oil fungicide, maybe what you used or very much like it. GardenSafe...good stuff. That may rid you of your problem. Don't be too afraid to spray it directly on some plants as long as they aren't in direct sunlight & you give the a water spray a day or so later.

Peace - Steve

Steve's Garden

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 1:14AM
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I think you may have 2 separate problems, judging by the photos.

The white spots are probably powdery mildew, which is a type of fungus. If you're not growing organically, you may wish to treat with daconil; there is one specifically for fruits and vegetables, so use that. It's very effective.

If you are growing organically you may, as suggested, try neem oil. However, don't apply it in sunlight and don't apply it if you expect temps over 90 degrees Fahrenheit, or it will burn the leaves. You may want to try a sulphur-based insecticide. "Safer" puts out one of those, but read and follow the directions, and make sure it's safe for vegetables.

It is treatable if you start working on it before it invades lots of leaves and weakens the plant.


Now, about that pepper plant. It could also be powdery mildew or it could be another, more serious disease. If you're not seeing white and/or diffuse yellow on the leaves, then it may not be powdery mildew.

You folks in the south get some plant diseases that those of us in the cold zones rarely or never experience. I'd feel a lot better if someone who is familiar with your part of the country would chime in. I hate to speculate, but...

First, if the pepper is planted in soggy ground that does not drain well, that could be your problem. If the other plants around it are not having problems, I'd suspect a virus, root nematodes (we don't get those up here), or soil-borne bacteria (we rarely have to deal with that either).

I don't like the way it is wilting. If sitting in water is not the problem, I'd suspect a systemic plant disease. I'm sorry to say that you may have to destroy the plant if it doesn't improve in a few days (and I doubt it will).

By "destroy" I mean you must dig it out, root and all, and put it in the trash. Don't compost it and don't leave it around; if it's diseased you don't want to contaminate other plants.

Since peppers are related to tomatoes, eggplant, and potatoes, it may infect those plants if you have them.

Try googling "peppers wilting" and see if can diagnose the problem. Again, I don't have any experience with some of the diseases that are common in your part of the world.

Link below to University of Florida info on diseases of peppers in FL.

Best of luck.

Here is a link that might be useful: UFL Pepper Diseases

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 11:18PM
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