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Powder Mildew in Compost?

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Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  dstack on 2/22/2014, 8:52 am

I'll be trimming a copperleaf hedge that has PM. The compost process should kill the PM spores... right? Would you compost the clippings or trash them?

The neem treatment last weekend did a great job at killing the PM back, but now it's coming back.
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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  camprn on 2/22/2014, 9:31 am

Burn the PM leaves or place them in the trash, not the cold compost pile. If you plan on doing hot composting, some folks say placing the affected leaves in this heap is acceptable.

http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/powdery-mildew

See previous threads about this subject.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t16435-safe-to-compost-powdery-mildew-leaves


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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  dstack on 2/22/2014, 9:41 am

@camprn wrote:Burn the PM leaves or place them in the trash, not the cold compost pile. If you plan on doing hot composting, some folks say placing the affected leaves in this heap is acceptable.

http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/powdery-mildew

See previous threads about this subject.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t16435-safe-to-compost-powdery-mildew-leaves

That's what I would think. My compost is hot, and I'm in need of more greens in it if I'm going to keep it hot. So, I'll chance it. At least I have plenty of Neem if and when the spores spark an infection.
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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  camprn on 2/22/2014, 9:59 am

Because of the location of your garden in Florida, conditions are often ideal for PM infection. Prevention is a good thing to consider. By choosing PM resistant varieties and prophylactic treatment of susceptible plants you will be able to reduce the occurrences of PM, but you will not eliminate them.

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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  dstack on 2/22/2014, 10:26 am

Yes, both my Marketmore cuke and Dunja zuke varieties are PM resistant, and I chose them because of those prime PM conditions here.
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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 2/22/2014, 7:06 pm

My personal choice is not to include anything at all that is diseased.  There are just too many variables that can impact whether or not the spores would die off and not enough reward for including the extra greens in my mix.  It's just not that hard to find good supplies and a LOT more work to combat infection when it occurs.

If you decide to do it, you might want to lay out the compost and cover it with black plastic in the sun for several days to solarize it (raise the temps to 160 degrees or so)
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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  dstack on 2/22/2014, 11:03 pm

Thanks , but the deed is done. I cut it up and mixed it into my black hot box.I'll have to trust the hot compost process to take care of it. And like I said, I use PM resistant varieties.  I appreciate the feedback.   Very Happy
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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  Marc Iverson on 2/23/2014, 9:50 pm

Is everything you intend to put the compost on resistant? Will you ever rotate crops in that might not be resistant?

When I think resistant with plants, I think of "water resistant." Which often means less that we wish it would.
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Re: Powder Mildew in Compost?

Post  dstack on 2/23/2014, 10:02 pm

@Marc Iverson wrote:Is everything you intend to put the compost on resistant?  Will you ever rotate crops in that might not be resistant?

When I think resistant with plants, I think of "water resistant."  Which often means less that we wish it would.
Yes. Also, here in Florida we basically have PM spores in the air everywhere and all the time. Thank goodness Neem oil works well. And my cheyenne pepper/garlic spray helps too because of the garlic anti-fungal properties. In my fresh batch that I started tonight I added Tabasco sauce and olive oil. This is mainly to repel bugs.
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