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What do I do after the Common blight in my beans?

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What do I do after the Common blight in my beans?

Post  Roseinarosecity on 8/14/2012, 7:06 pm

This is the first year I planted bush beans after I harvested my onions in my 4 x 4 SFG bed. Three quarters of them died of common blight. It started with what appeared as water soaked spots on the leaves, then wilting, and eventually drying up. The variety I planted were Contender and Cherokee Wax. I am going to pull them out and dump them in the trash. Is there anything I could do to "fix" the bed? I want to continue planting for Fall. I was watering with a wand because my irrigation system will be installed next year. In another bed the same varieties are doing fine.

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Re: What do I do after the Common blight in my beans?

Post  Roseinarosecity on 8/15/2012, 3:52 pm

I contacted the Master Gardener Program via their website to ask this same question. They responded as follows:

"Your beans do sound like they are infected with bean blight, a bacterial infection that is often carried in infected seeds and is transmitted by watering. I don't think the onions or squash are the problem, but the seeds themselves, and the watering and touching the infected plants spread the disease. It's a real problem with many commercial bean crops, and has destroyed many commercial bean enterprises over the years. The best idea at this point is to pull out all the bean plants and throw them in the trash. Don't plant beans or legumes for the next 3 years or so in that planting bed. It needs to dry out as the bacteria eventually die in dry conditions."

So I'm ok not planting legumes in that area. The drying the bed out part, I will have to wait since I have tomatoes still growing in that bed. Has anyone ever dried out their Mel's Mix to get rid of bacteria blight?

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Re: What do I do after the Common blight in my beans?

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/15/2012, 5:21 pm

I know nothing about any of this being new, but does the MG mean that you wouldn't plant anything in that bed, or just legumes & beans?

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Re: What do I do after the Common blight in my beans?

Post  Roseinarosecity on 8/15/2012, 11:42 pm

The MG advises not to plant any legumes for 3 years. It's too bad because I wanted to replenish my beds with the nitrogen fixers. I'm glad it was the seeds that were carrying the disease not the soil. I'm still wondering about drying out the Mel's Mix because it's a shame to leave these squares empty, and because my tomatoes are in one side of the edge in a trellis.

How long will it take to dry out Mel's Mix? I don't know, but if it will kill the bacteria that was imported by the seeds, I guess I better do it.

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Re: What do I do after the Common blight in my beans?

Post  cheyannarach on 8/16/2012, 9:32 am

Have you ever heard of solarization? People do it to kill weeds but it might work to help dry your beds out quicker. I have never done it but if you check into it it may be worth a shot, and you being in such a warm area could probably do it now effectively.
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Re: What do I do after the Common blight in my beans?

Post  Roseinarosecity on 8/16/2012, 5:44 pm

Yes, Cheyannarach, I have used solarization in the past to kill weeds in another area not being used for growing vegetables. The soil doesn't get hot enough to actually kill soilborne diseases. And it takes 4 - 6 weeks. In this 100 degree weather we are having in Pasadena, CA I think drying out the soil will be faster. I'll be using a water probe meter to know when the soil is dry.
Thanks.

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