Historic note

Group Title: Leesburg ARC Research Report - Leesburg Agricultural Research Center ; WG74-4
Title: Control of watermelon diseases
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00076028/00001
 Material Information
Title: Control of watermelon diseases
Series Title: Leesburg ARC Research Report - Leesburg Agricultural Research Center ; WG74-4
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Creator: Hopkins, D. L.
Publisher: University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Agricultural Research Center
Publication Date: 1974
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00076028
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 127151021

Table of Contents
    Historic note
        Unnumbered ( 1 )
        Page 1
        Page 2
Full Text


The publications in this collection do
not reflect current scientific knowledge
or recommendations. These texts
represent the historic publishing
record of the Institute for Food and
Agricultural Sciences and should be
used only to trace the historic work of
the Institute and its staff. Current IFAS
research may be found on the
Electronic Data Information Source

site maintained by the Florida
Cooperative Extension Service.

Copyright 2005, Board of Trustees, University
of Florida

\. 7 6L d'trobT of --Watermelon Diseases

D. L. Hopkins

The recommended fungicides (Table 1) will control the major foliar
fungus diseases of watermelon. The fungicide sprays may be applied
by various high-volume or low-volume ground sprayers and by airplane
sprayers. Regardless of the method of application, complete coverage
of the foliage is most important for good disease control. Inadequate
coverage results in poor disease control. The number and timing of
spray applications depend primarily on weather conditions. More
sprays are required generally in southern Florida than in central
and northern Florida. In southern Florida fungicide sprays are
necessary from seedling emergence; whereas, in northern Florida
regular fungicide sprays usually are not necessary until vining or
fruit-set stages.

Gummy stem blight and downy mildew are currently the two most
prevalent and damaging foliar fungus diseases of watermelon in
Florida. The gummy stem blight fungus causes leafspots, stem
cankers, and fruit rot. All the recommended fungicides can provide
adequate control of gummy stem blight. In wet, rainy years when
this disease has been quite severe, Difolatan has been most
effective against it in tests at Leesburg (Table 2).

The downy mildew fungus attacks only the leaves of watermelon.
When environmental conditions are favorable, downy mildew develops
rapidly and may give an entire field a "burned-off" appearance.
Dithane M-45, Manzate 200, and Bravo have consistently provided
the best control of downy mildew in tests at the ARC, Leesburg
(Table 2). Benlate does not control downy mildew. The difficulty
in controlling downy mildew results from its rapid spread. It is
most important with this disease that fungicide applications are
made before the appearance of symptoms in the field.

With the widespread use of anthracnose-resistant commercial water-
melon varieties, anthracnose is not the serious overall problem
that it used to be. Where anthracnose race 2 does occur, it can
be controlled with the recommended fungicides. Alternaria and
Cercospora leafspots also occur on watermelon in Florida but are
not as severe as gummy stem blight and downy mildew. They are
more easily controlled with fungicides.

Fusarium wilt is caused by a soil-borne fungus and cannot be controlled
with fungicides. Infected plants wilt and usually die. The use of
resistant varieties along with planting on new land is the best
method of controlling, or preventing, this disease. If new land is
not available, a rotation of at least 6 years between watermelon
crops is recommended. Even new land can become infested with
Fusarium wilt through drainage water, cattle, or f Tpe

Leesburg ARC Research Report WG74-4 PR 1 197
300 copies
January 23, 1974.


Bacterial leafspot is a disease which is associated with cool,
wet weather. This disease usually disappears with the onset
of warm dry weather, but if it becomes severe it can be controlled
with copper sprays (3 lbs. of 53% copper per acre).

Table 1. Recommended fungicides for the control of foliar
diseases of watermelon.

Min. days
Fungicide Rate (amt./acre) to harvest1

Maneb 80% 1 1/2 Ibs. 5
Dithane M-45 80% 1 1/2 lbs. 5
Manzate 200 80% 1 1/2 lbs. 5
Difolatan ~ flowable 2 1/2 pts. NTL
Bravo 75% or 6F 1 1/2-2 1/2 lbs. or NTL
1 1/2-2 1/2 pts.
Benlate 50%2 1/4-1/2 lb. NTL

1 This is the minimum number of days allowed between the
last foliar application and harvest. NTL = no time
2 Benlate does not control downy mildew or Alternaria
leaf spot.

Table 2. Fungicidal control of downy mildew (DM) and gummy
stem blight (GSB) of watermelon at Leesburg, Florida.

Rate % disease
(Amt./100 GS. DM 1971 yield
Fungicide gal. per acre) (1970) (1971) (tons/acre)

Dithane M-45 1 1/2 lbs. 39 18 26
Manzate 200 1 1/2 lbs. -- 27 24
Bravo 1 1/2 lbs. 45 35 25
Difolatan 2 1/2 pts. 22 53 26
Benlate + 1/2 lb. + 42 35 24
Manzate 200 1 lb.
Unsprayed -- 89 97 18

1 Ratings were made the third week of June in both years.

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