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Old July 17, 2010   #16
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: TX
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Will solarizing the soil help control Fusarium wilt ?
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Old July 17, 2010   #17
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Location: Upstate NY, zone 4b/5a
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Originally Posted by b54red View Post
From everything I have read about fusarium wilt it is not usually a problem that far north.
If you're referring to Heather in MA I tend to agree. There are pockets of it up here from time to time, mostly from infected imported plants but Fusarium cannot overwinter where the ground freezes deeply.Another source is seeds, usually obtained via a trade, b'c Fusarium can be seedborne.

I know of one situation where someone sent seeds to a commercial place for trial and the seeds, while fermented, still transmitted Fusarium.

A couple of other comments.

Lee's point about there being three races of Fusarium is one well taken, b'c there's no cross protection between those three races. So unless a person knows what race or races they're dealing with their results may not pertain to folks growing the same varieties in other areas, or indeed their own results as to what's most tolerant, etc.

Race 1 is quite common where Fusarium is a problem, also usually but not always race 2, and race 3 is most often found in FL, along the Gulf Coast up into CA. it's also been Ided in NC, SC and TN.

Another point is that Fusarium is not usually found equally distributed in a growing area and since infection is dose dependent some plants in a plot may go down and others won't leading someone to conclude that the latter were more tolerant, when in fact they weren't. They were just in an arfeas of the garden with no or less Fusarium.

EDited to add that it's also known that Fusarium can be transmitted in dust/soil/airborne particles and Craig in Raleigh can speak to that very well and it's also info that's on the net.
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Old July 17, 2010   #18
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Carolyn, since I have been gardening in the same location for 30 years I have found no spots in my main garden to be free of fusarium. I do have a couple of beds that are much worse and one that has only mild infection. In the worst areas I have never found a plant that is totally immune to the fusarium effects even the fusarium resistant hybrids are affected. When I say tolerant I mean a plant that can still be productive despite fusarium. Many of the varieties got several plantings in different locations to give me a fairer test. I don't know if some will turn out to be just lucky breaks in the planting locations but it is very hard to plant 3 plants in different locations in my garden and avoid fusarium. Many of the ones that I think are tolerant were planted in the same spot as one that had to be removed because it was dying of fusarium wilt yet they still were able to grow and produce well. Since I was told many years ago by an extension agent that I could only grow fusarium resistant varieties in my garden I have gotten tired of the sameness of the hybrids and now I am in pursuit of some heirlooms that can perform. This could be a totally futile experiment; but next year I am going to bet on the ones that thrived this year.
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