Rust Fungus: Symptoms and Treatments
Plant rust is often caused by a pathogen called rust fungus. This pathogen is a part of a rather large family of fungi that attack plants. Although plant rusting seems like a grave matter, it is usually treatable especially when acted upon immediately.
This short guide aims to inform you about what signs and symptoms to look for in case you suspect that your plant has fallen victim to rust fungi. Some prevention and treatment methods are also included to help you keep these pathogens away from your precious green friend.
Plant Rust Signs and Symptoms
Luckily, plants infected by rust fungi are relatively easy to identify. This disease is often characterized by a discoloration on the plant’s leaves and stems, identifiable by its unique rust-like hue. This is usually visible on the underside of the leaves of the infected plant.
In case you find one of your plants infected by rust fungi, don’t panic. This pathogen usually attacks a specific type of plant. Neighboring plants, grouped in a different specie, will not likely acquire the disease, contrary to popular belief.
Plant Rust Treatment
To treat plant rust in plants, immediately remove leaves that show rust symptoms. Remember that the faster you remove these infected leaves, the higher the chance of your plant surviving the disease as well. Don’t forget to properly dispose the leaves as well. Do not use these leaves as compost, for that increases the risk of the fungi thriving in your planting space.
After removing infected leaves, apply fungicide in the soil. You can use neem oil as fungicide in case you want a more organic option instead of chemical fungicides available in the market. Repeat the entire process until the infected plant stops showing rust symptoms anymore.
Plant Rust Prevention
Rust fungi thrives in wet and moist environment. So as logic dictates, a way to keep these pathogens away is by making sure that your plant is given just enough moisture everyday. Avoid overwatering your plant or leaving it damp overnight. You can also apply a little amount of fungicide on the soil prior to planting to ensure that your plant stays protected from various types of fungi.
Prevention, in all aspects, is always better than cure. That is why it is important that you know how to protect your plants from harmful pathogens that can possibly shorten their lifespan.