Late Blight: Grower and Farm Stand Alert

Contact: Jim Dill, (207) 949-2155

Potato late blight, the disease that caused the significant crop losses for tomatoes and potatoes in Maine last year has just been confirmed at a sight in Waldoboro, and several other suspected sites are now being investigated.  Typical symptoms will be a water-soaked grease spot on foliage with a fine white mycelium on the underside of the leaflet. A stalk infection will usually look dark brown, almost black. The spores released by infected plants have the ability to travel 40 plus miles under the right conditions and infect potato and tomato plants.  We are encouraging all commercial growers and home gardeners to be carefully inspecting their plants for disease.

The University of Maine Cooperative Extension Pest Management Office in Orono will look at any samples that you may suspect have been infected and has copies of a home gardener alert, a late blight ID sheet for roadside stand producers and a poster for late blight identification that you can use to make your help and your customers more aware of this potentially devastating disease.

Please feel free to contact The University of Maine Cooperative Extension Pest Management Office with any questions.

Late Blight Hotline:

For the most recent information, call the IPM Hotline at 207-760-9IPM (207-760-9476).

Pest Management Office
491 College Avenue
Orono, ME  04473