Welcome to May Day Nursery News.

Here you will find information about house plants and succulents.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Oh! Those Nasty Diseases

Oh! Those Nasty Diseases
 Just like humans, plants can get sick with a disease. Even the healthiest plant may be at risk from pests but, given reasonable good growing conditions, houseplants suffer from comparatively few diseases. Over watering, over feeding, excessive warmth or cold, poor ventilation, and lack of light not only prevent proper growth of a plant, but may also make it susceptible to attack by various fungi, bacteria and viruses. Many diseases caused by fungi or bacteria can be brought under control, but there is no defense against a virus.
Sooty Mold

A fungus which lives on honeydew (excrement of of pests). Plants which are infested by these insects are susceptible to attacks.

Symptoms: Black mould covers the leaves of the plant.
Treatment: Wash leaves and stems with soapy water solution. You many need to rub leaves like shampooing your hair. Do not rinse the leaves after applying the soapy water solution. For more information on pest control check out Pests (Things That Bite).


A fungal disease likely to effect begonias, codiaeum and Euonymus japonica.

Symptoms: White mold on leaves and stems.
Treatment: Remove the mildewed parts of the plant and spray with a fungicide. Water less frequently and give the plant better ventilation.

Viral Diseases

These are the invisible enemies of houseplants.

Symptoms: Varied, Leaves mottled with green ad yellow patches, stunted and distorted.

Causes: Infection by a virus, possibly carried by insects.
Treatment: Nothing can be done except to discard the plant to prevent infection of other plants. Also throw away the compost. Never use it again.

Root Rot

A fungal disease to which the root is effected caused by over watering.

Symptoms: Plant is wilting with leaves shriveling and turning brown.
Treatment: If the plant is too far gone throw it away. Otherwise repot it. First, remove all dead foliage and then, using water, wash all the compost from the roots. Cut away any roots which are brown, soft and mushy. Repot the plant in fresh compost which has been watered with a fungicide. Water sparingly and infrequently until the foliage has picked up. For more information on watering check out Watering Your Plants.

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