What's wrong with my snapdragons?

Asked May 28, 2016, 1:24 PM EDT

My snapdragons appear to be sick. What is this?

Multnomah County Oregon

1 Response

Your snapdragons have a fungus disease called rust. Hereabouts,snapdragons are perennial plants that do well during their first year in the garden but not during the second. If the spring of their second year is dry, they may not be attacked by rust. Because that’s basically an impossible dream here in the northwest, you would be wise to replace your snaps every year.

If you want to try to extend their lives beyond the first year, relay on cultural control:

- Start from seed.

- Make certain the planting area has excellent air circulation.

- Water at ground level early in the day so the leaves dry as quickly as possible; don’t water from overhead.

If you want to spray, start at the very first indication of the disease. (It’s far too late this year to spray; remove and discard these heavily affected plants.) Products available for home gardeners are Ferti lome Liquid Systemic Fungicide; Infuse Systemic Disease Control; and Spectracide Immunox. Follow label directions.