Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tomato Blight Update

Tomato blight, as mentioned previously here, is troublesome to say the least, and devastating for farmers and home gardeners, to say the most. Royer Held, a.k.a. Project Grow's Heirloom Enthusiast, sent along the following helpful links about tomato blight and how to contend with it.

NPR's Science Friday recently aired an interview with Chad Nusbaum, a scientist who mapped the genome. Along with some genetic science, Nusbaum offers insight into how the disease spreads and what gardeners should do if they discover it. (The transcript of the interview is also quite helpful.)

Additionally, Science Friday's Flora Lichtbaum visited a farm afflicted with late blight, and created a video vividly portraying the plight caused by the disease as well as illustrating its effect on the plant.

What to do with infected plants?
If a plant is suspect, remove it immediately including any fallen leaves. DO NOT COMPOST IT. Bag it up and put it our with the trash. Other options are detailed in this document, along with more links to properly identify late blight and how to monitor for it.

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