Devastating Crop Disease Detected Near Chautauqua County

Image courtesy: Pennsylvania State University.

ERIE COUNTY, Pa. – A devising disease blamed for the Irish Potato Famine in the 1840s was recently detected in Erie County Pennsylvania.

Chautauqua County Cornell Cooperative Extension officials are warning local growers that Late Blight was detected in July.

Health Officials say Late Blight causes a fungus-like organism that spreads dozens of miles on storm fronts. The organisms can kill plants in just one weeks’ time.

Generally, infected plants will have leaf spots with small fuzzy white spores on the underside.

Late Blight also puts dark brown to black smears on plant stems. Tomato fruit may also develop large, greasy-looking, brown, gray, or black smears on the upper part of the fruit.

Cornell Cooperative Extension asks anyone suspecting they have the disease to contact Chautauqua County’s office at 716-664-9502.

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