Strange Black Mold/Rot On Broccoli Head

Asked October 15, 2018, 10:48 AM EDT

Many of the heads of our fall broccoli have this sort of black rotting happening in certain spots on the head. Some of our broccoli's have grown to a tremendous size and are wonderful, but the farther down the row you go the more of these black spots you see, and the smaller the heads become, until at the end of the row the broccoli plants havent produced a head at all. I at first thought it was a lack of water reaching the plants, something to do with our drip tape, but it has been fairly rainy here, so no additional irrigation has occurred. The broccoli heads were harvested yesterday, and now the black rot is spreading across the head, almost with a goo-like consistency, and a strong fishy odor to them which is almost intolerable. These heads were left out at room temp, but were kept separate from the healthy heads - I have not yet made it back to the farms walk-in to see if those kept in the fridge from the beginning are in the same condition. Could it be botrytis? I've never seen this before. Thank you!

Oakland County Michigan

1 Response

With the symptoms of the odor and the breakdown of tissue you mention I think it is most likely bacterial soft rot. this website has good information about the disease- how to prevent it, and manage it.