Dan Egel

Clinical Engagement Associate Professor
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SWPAC

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The Midwest Vegetable Production Guide for Commercial Growers 2018 (ID-56) was printed in December or 2017.  At the same time, the on-line version was posted at mwveguide.org.  As updates need to be made to the ID-56, I will make those updates to the on-line version. I will announce these updates in the Hotline as I post them. Consider the updates below and mark those updates in the hard copy of your ID-56 that will affect you. Briefly, Quadris Top® has been changed to silent on greenhouse use, Luna® products have been added to crops in the fruiting vegetable chapter, and RUP® has been added to Pounce 25WP® under sweet corn. My thanks to the several individuals who have suggested updates. Fungicide table, page 79-Change Quadris Top® from no to silent under the column for greenhouse use. Eggplant, page 134-under anthracnose, add Luna Sensation® at 7.6 fl. oz. per acre. 3-day[Read More…]


Figure 2: A tomato with tomato spotted wilt virus has necrotic ring spots.

While many virus diseases affect pepper and tomato plants, in the Midwest, the most common virus diseases of these two crops are tomato spotted wilt virus (TSWV) and Impatiens necrotic spot virus (INSV). These diseases are usually observed in greenhouse or high tunnel situations. The two viruses, TSWV and INSV are closely related. In fact, at one time, they were both considered TSWV. Therefore, the symptoms, biology and management of these two diseases are similar. This article discusses the symptoms, biology and management of these two diseases. Both TSWV and INSV affect many hosts, including vegetables and flowering ornamentals. Symptoms vary according to host, stage of plant affected and environmental conditions. Both diseases can cause stunting, yellowing, necrotic rings, leaf mottle and more. Figure 1 shows a tomato leaf with necrotic rings caused by TSWV. Figure 2 shows a pepper transplant with ring spots caused by INSV. Additional symptoms may[Read More…]


Figure 1. Powdery mildew causes talc-like lesions on pumpkin leaves.

Powdery mildew is a foliar disease of all plants in the cucurbit family.  The talc-like symptoms on leaves are relatively easy to identify  (Figure 1).  More about powdery mildew of cucurbits can be found at this link https://vegcropshotline.org/article/powdery-mildew-of-cucurbits-2/.  The remainder of this article is an update. There are several systemic fungicides which are recommended for powdery mildew of cucurbits. These include:  Aprovia Top®, Fontelis®, Luna Experience®, Merivon®, Procure®, Quintec®, Rally® and Torino®.  Recently, fungicide resistance to the product Torino® was discovered in eastern New York. I don’t know if the strains of the powdery mildew fungus we have in Indiana are resistant to Torino® or not.  Growers should scout their fields for the effectiveness of Torino® and other products. It is always best to alternate systemic fungicides for the management of powdery mildew of cucurbits. If possible, alternate between 3 or 4 products that have different modes of action. Not only[Read More…]


The Midwest Vegetable Production Guide for Commercial Growers 2018 described above is a good way to keep up with what fungicides are recommended and their proper use. Last year, I developed a fungicide schedule to help growers schedule when fungicides are applied. These fungicide schedules seemed to be popular, so I have updated the fungicide schedules and made them available again. There are two fungicide schedules- one for cantaloupe and watermelons and a second for pumpkins. You can find the schedules at this URL: https://ag.purdue.edu/arge/swpap/Pages/SWPAPPresentationFiles.aspx. Or call (812) 886-0198.    


The Midwest Vegetable Production Guide for Commercial Growers 2018 is available for sale as a hardcopy ($15) or free on-line.  Actually, the Vegetable Guide has been available since last December. The guide may be purchased through the Education Store, at various extension meetings held around the state or from your Purdue University county educator. The website to either view or purchase the Guide, known in Indiana as the ID-56, is mwveguide.org. The Midwest Vegetable Production Guide is a collaboration of 8 states and 9 institutions. Are you thinking that you already have a Vegetable Guide from a past year and wondering if it is worth getting a new one? The article below represents just some of the changes to this year’s Vegetable Guide.  What’s New in 2018? New and Revised Sections For this year’s guide, we created three new tables — Selected Information About Recommended Insecticides (page 54), Herbicides (page[Read More…]


he round lesions on this watermelon are caused by Phytophthora blight. Note that the Phytophtora blight fungus can be seen sporulating on the lesion under moist conditions.

This disease was a serious problem in much of the state this past summer.  As a result, I have had many questions about managing this disease.  The questions I have been asked have ranged from what do I spray to how does this disease work? Therefore, I have written an article about the symptoms, biology and management of Phytophthora blight. I will concentrate on Phytophthora blight of cucurbits, but this disease is also a very serious problem on peppers. In the following article, I will outline some of the information I think it is important to know about this important disease. Phytophthora blight-biology Phytophthora blight is caused by a fungus-like organism known as Phytophthora capsici. Even when I was in graduate school in the 1980’s, my professors told us that we would discuss Phytophthora and related organisms in our fungus taxonomy class even though these organisms are more closely related to brown[Read More…]


Earlier in August, downy mildew was reported on all cucurbit species in LaPorte County in northwest Indiana and on pumpkins in Starke County (just south of La Porte County). More recently, downy mildew was reported on cucumbers and butternut squash in Knox County in southwestern Indiana. In addition, downy mildew is strongly suspected on cucumbers in Jefferson County. Growers in nearby areas should take care to manage downy mildew if they have valuable cucurbit crops. However, this late in the season, it is unlikely that there will be widespread losses. Management of downy mildew of cucurbits is discussed in the Midwest Vegetable Production Guide for Commercial Growers 2017 mwveguide.org and in the extension bulletin Downy Mildew of Pumpkin https://www.extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/BP/BP-140-W.pdf.  Note that downy mildew of cucurbits and downy mildew of soybeans are not caused by the same organism.  Please call Dan Egel if you have questions or concerns.


Figure 3: The pumpkin plants in the foreground of this photos have yellow leaves.

This time of year, I receive many complaints of pumpkin plants with yellow leaves. There can be many reasons why pumpkin plants have yellow leaves. The most common reason for yellow pumpkin leaves doesn’t have anything to do with a disease that can spread from plant to plant. Usually, the reason for the yellow pumpkin leaves has to do with lack of water, weather that has been too hot, nutrient deficiency or other stresses. The photos and discussion below will, I hope, illustrate my point. Let’s say you have a pumpkin field where you have pumpkin leaves that are yellow and you are wondering about the cause. You may want to ask yourself, which leaves are yellow and where are they yellow. In Figure 1, yellow pumpkin leaves may be observed.  When one looks a bit closer to find out where the yellow leaves are, one can see that the[Read More…]


Figure 1: Cercospora leaf spot of garden beet causes bray/brown lesions with reddish margins.

This disease was observed in southern Indiana recently. Cercospora leaf spot affects table beets and swiss chard. Symptoms include circular leaf spots that may have a reddish margin. The center of the lesions may start off a light brown and turn to gray after the fungus (Cercospora beticola) begins to sporulate. Under conditions conducive to disease, the lesions can coalesce and result in loss of foliage. Yield and quality of the crop can be reduced. Cercospora leaf spot is favored by rainy weather or overhead irrigation and temperatures from 77 to 95°F.  The spores are readily dispersed in rainy, windy weather. Resistant cultivars are available. Fall tillage and crop rotations of 2 to 3 years should help to lessen disease severity. Several fungicides are listed in the 2017 Midwest Vegetable Production Guide for Commercial Growers including copper compounds, some of which may be allowed in organic certifications. Synthetic fungicides include:[Read More…]


Figure 1. Powdery mildew causes talc-like lesions on pumpkin leaves.

Powdery mildew is a common disease of cantaloupe and pumpkin in Indiana. Occasionally, I observe this disease on watermelon as well. Recently, I have noticed more powdery mildew than usual on watermelon. If left uncontrolled, this disease can cause loss of foliage, loss of yield and lower quality fruit. This article will discuss the biology and management of powdery mildew of cucurbits with an emphasis on watermelon. Powdery mildew is relatively easy to recognize; talc-like lesions occur on both sides of the leaf (Figure 1).  (This article https://vegcropshotline.org/powdery-mildew-symptoms-vs-variegated-leaves/ has additional information about powdery mildew symptoms. ) The fungus that causes powdery mildew, Podosphaera xanthii, does not require leaf wetness for infection of leaves, only high humidity. The optimum temperature for disease development is 68 to 81°F. P. xanthii may survive for a period in crop residue as a resilient fungal structure, but the disease is so easily windborne, that crop rotation is not always[Read More…]