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Old 08-22-2013, 08:17 AM   #1
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Whats killing my squash


My squash leaves have a white powdery substance on them and they are dying off. Any thoughts on what it could be?
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Old 08-22-2013, 08:21 AM   #2
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Whats killing my squash


It's powdery mildew. You can control it with a fungicide. Lots of air circulation helps too. I've got the same issue with cucumbers. It's another weird summer in the Northeast. Lots of dew overnight and into the early morning which makes the mildew spread like crazy.

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Old 08-22-2013, 09:40 AM   #3
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Whats killing my squash


Yeah it has been overly humid and evening showers here in Colorado as well. Very different from usual summers. Where should I pick up this fungicide and how should I apply it?
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Old 08-22-2013, 09:57 AM   #4
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Yeah it has been overly humid and evening showers here in Colorado as well. Very different from usual summers. Where should I pick up this fungicide and how should I apply it?
You can find a fungicide anywhere that sells garden supplies. Read the label and it should specify powdery mildew. It's typically a liquid that you spray on the leaves. I'm using Daconil and it comes in both premixed spray bottle or concentrate.
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Old 08-22-2013, 10:17 AM   #5
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Whats killing my squash


Will this make the fruit inedible? I've read that some will poison the fruit.
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Old 08-22-2013, 11:30 AM   #6
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Whats killing my squash


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Will this make the fruit inedible? I've read that some will poison the fruit.
No it's safe. The label will tell you if you need to wait a certain number of days between spraying and harvesting.
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Old 08-22-2013, 06:05 PM   #7
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Whats killing my squash


Try never to water late in the day so the leaves and soil have a chance to dry before dusk. This will help create a less suitable environment for the spores to grow.

I know it is tempting to water when you get home from work but it is not a good idea. You might get a timer for the hose if early watering is problematic.

Try not to splash water on the soil in a way that you could dislodge (and send airborne where they can attach to leaves) hiding spores either.

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Old 08-23-2013, 01:08 AM   #8
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Whats killing my squash


Also it is sort of late in the season to worry about it now and it rarely will kill a plant.
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:10 AM   #9
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Try never to water late in the day so the leaves and soil have a chance to dry before dusk. This will help create a less suitable environment for the spores to grow.

I know it is tempting to water when you get home from work but it is not a good idea. You might get a timer for the hose if early watering is problematic.

Try not to splash water on the soil in a way that you could dislodge (and send airborne where they can attach to leaves) hiding spores either.
I installed a new zone this year and have soaker hoses that run for 25 min in each one of the beds. The zone runs twice a day once at 9:30 am and once at 2:00 pm. No splashing on the leaves with the exception of the early evening rains that have been going on for the last month. I suspect that is the culprit.
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Old 08-23-2013, 10:13 AM   #10
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Whats killing my squash


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Also it is sort of late in the season to worry about it now and it rarely will kill a plant.
That is my thought too. I pruned a lot of the infected leaves last night and uncovered new growth so I'm not too worried about the plants livelihood. But it was nice to give it some good paths for air to circulate and to see how many other plants these squash had been covering! I'm sure my bush beans will thank me.
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Old 08-23-2013, 12:06 PM   #11
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Whats killing my squash


There are different kinds of sprays which are used/sprayed for the vegetables and fruits to protect them from damage. Farmers mostly use that.
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Old 08-23-2013, 12:53 PM   #12
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Whats killing my squash


We have the same thing going on here in Michigan, but I am in the camp of letting it go. Except for the same cool nights and subsequent heavy dew, we have had an almost perfect year as far as the right amount of sun and rain, and, other than the appearance of the leaves, I have not seen any adverse affect on the crops. We've been eating squash, zuchinni, and cucumbers for weeks now, and new ones keep coming. And the pumpkins, although a bit early to tell for sure, do not seem at all malnutritioned.
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:23 PM   #13
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Whats killing my squash


as an alternative to the chemical sprays we use a few drops of dawn dish soap and about a tablespoon of baking soda dissolved in a gallon of water. Spray every day for a week and the mildew will die off without harming the healthy parts of the plant. I use one of those pump sprayers to spread and it works great.
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:24 AM   #14
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Whats killing my squash


I met a guy at the farmers market that said to cut back on the water if I wanted the squash to ripen faster. I'm gonna let it go too, Other than pruning a bunch of leaves to let air flow improve.
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Old 09-12-2013, 03:45 AM   #15
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Whats killing my squash


If I were you, I won't use commercialized chemical fungicides. Better use natural household ingredients as fungicides like milk. A spray made out of 40% milk and 60% water is as effective as a chemical fungicides in managing powdery mildew. I am not saying that using chemical fungicides are not safe to use but its just I'm not sure if it's 100% safe to use without causing any harm to you and the plant. Better be safe than sorry! Hope it helps!

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