Tuesday, 2 July 2013
Fungal Disease (in the garden)
Many of us have, or are about to, plant out brassica in the vegetable garden, and with that is concern about Clubroot. Clubroot is a fungal disease, that lives in the soil. It causes swollen and distorted root growth, and the upper part of the pant can appear stunted, be prone to wilting and generally look unhealthy. This disease can survive in the soil for 20(!) years.So what can we do to control or prevent this disease? Well, there is NO chemical treatment available to gardeners. But, liming the soil well, and improving drainage, by adding loads of organic matter, or building raised beds we give our little brassica plants the advantage, (as the fungus thrives in damp acidic soil). If sowing your own seeds, use fresh compost, not soil from the garden. When buying plants from us you can be assured that they are Clubroot free. If you already have Clubroot on your plot, that doesn't mean you have to stop crowing brassica, potting your plants on into fresh compost, so that they are well established before you plant them out gives them a head start . Try to prevent contaminating other beds, by transferring infected soil on garden tools, or transplants etc. Or you could try the old trick of putting a chunk of Rhubarb in the planting hole when planting, some say it works, others say no, but we gardeners will give anything a go wont we!. There are loads of resistant varieties now available, and more being developed every year.PLANTS AFFECTED BY CLUBROOT: All brassica, cabbages, cauliflower, kale, sprouts, radishes, kohlrabi, turnips, sweedes, also be aware that, Wallflowers, Aubretia, Stocks, and weeds such as Sheperds Purse, are all part of the brassica family, and its best not to transfer them to your plot from a garden where you know Clubroot is a problem.