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Potato Blight has been spotted in the UK

Posted Jun 16 2009 5:24pm

Potato Blight has been spotted in the UK this season.

Kerry has written in saying: hi my first crop of potato plants seem to have potato blight (i am only guessing from descriptions that i have read on various sites) i was wondering if any potatoes produced from this crop can be eaten? the potatoes that i have got seem to be ok in appearance but obviously wanted to check first
thanks in advance of your replies
kerry

 

TopVeg has replied:

Potato Blight is easy to spot because the leaf of the potato plant is either dead or green. At the division between the dead & green bits, on the underside of the leaf, you will be able to see the white fungus of blight. This fungus will move across the underside of the leaf until all the leaf is dead.

potato-blight

potato-blight

There should not be any blight in the potato tubers this early in the season and they will be quite safe to eat.

Getting blight in potatoes early in the season is soul destroying, particularly if they are main crop potatoes, which have not yet produced large tubers. As the season progresses, blight is likely to affect the tubers, and then they will not store properly for the winter. In future it is worth treating the potato leaves with a protective spray against potato blight. These sprays are gentle and safe. There is no other way of preventing blight. Some potato varieties are more susceptible than others to the disease.

blight-on-leaf-tips

blight-on-leaf-tips

Blight is a wet weather disease. Blight can come into the potatoes quickly, particularly in wet weather. Once in the crop it is difficult to stop and will only slow down if it is exceptionally dry weather and low-humidity.   This link gives more information about the conditions leading to potato blight.

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