With all the rain we've had, my cucumber, squash, and melon plants are in bad shape. I read that there are different fungicide recommendations depending on whether one wants to prevent or eradicate. Unfortunately, I'm pretty much in the eradicate camp at this point. Can you recommend an active ingredient/product? Will the same product work on the squash and the melons, or do I need something different?
District of Columbia County District of Columbia
All of our recommendations, especially in terms of vegetable gardening is based on IPM (integrated pest management), which always seeks the least toxic alternative for garden solutions. It involves an understanding and careful examination of all factors (and their interrelationships) influencing plant growth. These include, soil, water, air, nutrients, insects, diseases, landscape design, weeds, animals, beneficial organisms, weather and cultural practices. The goal is to manage pests and diseases at acceptable levels rather than attempting to eliminate them. See our publication for more information http://extension.umd.edu/sites/default/files/_images/programs/hgic/Publications/HG62%20IPM%20A%20Com...
First you will have to identify what you are dealing with and know what you are spraying for. You cannot assume a fungal problem. In some cases the problem may be cultural or environmental. We would like to see photos of the above vegetables and symptoms before we make a recommendation.
If the plants are badly affected, you can replant the squash and cucumber.
Thanks, yes I would definitely appreciate some help identifying the problem. I've included 2 pictures. The first one (where you can see some grey pavers on the side) is a honeydew plant. The second picture is of a cucumber plant. Rebecca
We viewed your photos and this does not look like a disease on the plants. We do not recommend a control. This looks like an environmental problem like a possible scorch or burn. We also notice you used a thick hardwood mulch around the plants. The mulch may be holding a lot of moisture. Move the mulch away from the base of the stems. At this point monitor the progress of your plants and you can send us additional photos if symptoms progress.
View our vegetable profiles on squash cucumber and melons for more information https://extension.umd.edu/growit/vegetable
Thanks very much for your response. I have a couple of follow up questions. Are you suggesting that the environmental stress is the cause of the problems I'm seeing for both the honeydew melons and the squash? I ask because the damage looks quite different on the melons vs the squash. The other question I have is about your comment on the mulch. The mulch layer isn't that thick, although I will definitely try your suggestion of moving some out of the way. Are you suggesting that the water isn't draining adequately because of all the mulch, i.e., water logging, or that the plants may not be getting sufficient water? Rebecca
The variation in symptoms may be a factor of the genetic makeup of the plants and looks environmental.
Just check to make sure the soil is draining well and kept evenly moist. See the above profiles on watering. If you do not have good drainage, the plants can be susceptible to possible root rots.