lettuce root fungus

Asked September 2, 2013, 5:24 PM EDT

This year it seemed as if a root fungus got at my lettuce plants. The plants were very intolerant to dryness, and when I pulled them up the roots seemed mushy with a white fungusy look.

The beds were made from a fairly well-seasoned compost of white-pine shavings, chicken poop, and used coffee grounds. (The first two from chicken bedding, the last from a coffee shop.)

A) Are you familiar with this? and B) How can I organically control this?

Multnomah County Oregon fruits and vegetables disease issues garden insects horticulture

1 Response

Hello again, a colleague suggested that the problem might be lettuce root aphids. After reviewing the specifics on this bug I think it in fact may be the culprit to your problem based on your description. If you have photos of the root systems that show them pretty close up please send them so we can verify that is in fact the cause. If you still have plants being impacted you can also take them entire plant and root system to your county extension office and ask them to look for the lettuce root aphid. I have included a website that will give you more information about this critter and help you to deal with it if that is in fact what happened to your lettuce. http://pnwhandbooks.org/insect/vegetable/vegetable-pests/hosts-and-pests/lettuce-lettuce-root-aphid . Your county extension office can offer advice also. Debbie Lauer