Monosporascus Root Rot / Vine Decline

Monosporascus Root Rot infected plants wilt and die

Image 1

Monosporascus Root Rot causing vascular browning

Image 2

Monosporascus Root Rot showing brown regions on root

Image 3

Root lesions caused by other soil-borne fungi

Image 4

Causal Agent: (fungus ‑ Monosporascus cannonballus)

Infected plants usually do not develop symptoms until near harvest time. Infected plants wilt (Image 1) and eventually die. Sometimes, there is vascular browning (Image 2). Brown lesions may be found on the roots (Image 3), even on plants that are not wilting. Root lesions may be caused by other soil-borne fungi, such as Pythium sp. and Rhizoctonia solani (Image 4). This disease is primarily a problem on silt or clay soils of the Lower Rio Grande Valley. The fungus is indigenous to the soil and populations build up with continued cucurbit monoculture, particularly cantaloupe. Soil fumigation is an effective control, but is not usually economical. Soils with consistent problems should not be planted to cucurbits.

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