Fungi and FLOs (fungal-like organisms) could cause significant food loss and negatively impact human nutrition and plant health if not checked. According to a study, airborne fungi can cause more damage and diseases to crops like rice, potato, tomato and ginger, than bacteria and viruses. They are responsible for destroying millions of tonnes of the top five food crops annually. (Source). Some of the major food losses in history are linked to fungi and fungi-like organisms. (More)
They damage plants by destroying their cells or causing plant stress. As far as where they originate from; the source could be various, including infected soil and seed, weeds, crop debris. They move from one location to another with wind, a splash of water, animals, soil, agriculture tools etc. Most of them enter the host plant through natural openings or wounds in a plant. Given the severe consequences of fungi and FLOs on agricultural production and the overall environment, plants must be checked regularly, and adequate steps are taken in advance.
Signs of fungus
Plants suffering from fungus could show different types of symptoms. The following list covers a few of them. Some of these may be caused by some other factors too, but the presence of fungi or FLOs should not be ignored.
● White blisters on leaves. The blister may consist of white-dust looking spores.
● Leaves turning yellow, eventually replaced by brown colour
● Leaves are turning out to be weak, papery and dying
● Seedlings are dying post-emergence, plants are collapsing
● Plants tissues are getting soft and showing grey fungal development
● Blackening of roots, sunken spots on the leaves, fruits or stems of a plant
● Stunted plants
Factors that encourage fungi development
The agricultural land with a stable balance between different organisms should thrive with plants. However, there are factors capable of damaging this balance, eventually allowing fungi and FLOs to launch irreversible damages continuously. Other than natural factors like drought, increased humidity and temperature, using wrong fertilizers or overusing fertilizers, overwatering, improper mowing etc., can encourage their growth.
The word ‘Fungicides’ refers to a type of biocidal chemical compounds or biological organisms used to kill or restrict the growth of fungi and fungi spores, including mildews, blights, rusts, moulds etc.
How much is too much?
Fungicides can effectively protect agricultural produce, but they must be used efficiently, judiciously and safely. Before applying fungicide, make sure you know the cause of the disease and are sure that using the particular fungicide is the recommended solution. Fungicides should be used over time in recommended amounts for efficient protection against recurring diseases. However, overuse or applying wrong ones may make the fungi develop resistance, rendering the fungicide ineffective. Overusing is also not good for the overall environment.
This is why it is essential to read the label properly, follow all safety precautions and use the appropriate equipment during application. Generally, the labels provide information on recommended use. The need to use fungicides and their frequency may differ based on several factors. For insights into the exact frequency of application, you can seek advice and recommendation from an expert or authority in the field.
While fungicide and other agrochemical products provide adequate protection from different plant diseases, it is essential to stop the issues from happening. Always give the plants a favorable environment and regularly watch their growth.
Find the best agrochemical products
To learn more about fungicide chemicals, systemic fungicide etc., please feel free to visit this page to find various products that can help control a broad range of pests and disease problems in plants.