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Seed Rot, A Common Plant Disease | North American Farmer

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Seed Rot

About the Disease: There are so many plant diseases that you might be aware of. Seed rot is one of the most common plant diseases. This refers to the sudden death of the plant seedlings. It is a fungal disease that might be carried in the seed or the soil.

Symptoms: the roots of the plants will turn into either brown or black color in severe cases. There will be a sudden change in the color of leaves and the seeds stop germinating. The stems do not grow upright and start bending towards the soil. Wilting of the leaves occur.

Pathogen Involved: This is mainly a fungal disease. These fungi can thrive for a very long time in the soil. They can live even up to 4 years in soil. Some examples of the pathogens include Aspergillus flavus Aspergillus niger, Fusarium moniliforme and Rhizopus nigricans.

Time of Occurrence: The seed rot can occur in any of the two phases. It can occur as the premature death of a plant or the seedlings, even before the seeds come out of the pod. This can also happen after the seeds come out of the pod. In either case, the plant is a dead one, which cannot be further cultivated.

Conditions Favoring Disease: This fungal disease can be caused by overwatering the plants. When the soil is unfit for the growth of plants, seed rot can occur. The condition in which the plants grow must be highly hygienic. If it is grown in unfertile soil or dirty water, seed rot might occur. Too many seedlings need not be grown in the same container. It will lead to a heavy competition among the different seedlings and each one will try to compete with the other for growing to the same extent in the same space. Too much overcrowding will also give room for the growth of the fungus. When you grow the plants in low light or under a very harsh and cold condition, you cannot expect the plant to grow healthily.

Disease Management: Plants need to be grown in hygienic conditions. There need not be many plants in the same pot. Continuous monitoring of the fungal growth must be done. The containers need to be cleaned quiet often. The soil mixture must be sterile and checked for the nutrient content. The seedlings need to be watered regularly and in right quantities. The roots must get submerged in water. There must be proper ventilation for the plants. Seeds need not be planted very deep. Instead of soil, peat and vermiculate mixture can be used.