DIY Network

Organic Plant Health Care

Learn how to add some compost and compost tea to organic plants instead of fertilizer.

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fungicides and bactericides for organic gardens
Photo 3 of 6It's a good idea to start looking for plant diseases early, before they get out of hand.

Plant Diseases (3 of 6)

There are four types of diseases that effect plants: fungus, bacteria, viruses and nematodes. All of these are treatable with synthetics, but the organic gardener has to try to prevent them.

There are only a few fungicides and bactericides available to organic gardeners, and these are often more damaging than helpful. Some common types are Bordeaux mix, copper sprays, lime-sulfur, streptomycin and sulfur. Be sure to read the instructions carefully before using any type of chemical treatment, organic or synthetic. The best way to fight fungus is through prevention and cleanliness in the garden.

Viruses, especially potato mosaic virus, can run very quickly through a garden, especially one that's full of plants. If you see an infected plant, pull it out immediately. If you wait to see what happens, it can spread to other plants. Infected plants have distorted and discolored leaves and seem to be stunted.

Next Photo: Nematodes

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