The Most Common Plant Problems And How To Fix Them?

Are you a person who feels disheartened when you see a plant facing problems that are actually pretty common? If yes, worrying about the status of the plants doesn’t help you at all. Yes, I can understand your emotions when seeing your plants’ wilt or when their growth isn’t normal. Sometimes, the plants have unknown spots that make you feel deflated.

How To Identify Plant Problems?

One important thing you should check out is the leaves of your plants. The leaves give you some signs of whether the plants are in good condition. Hence, an experienced grower knows how to identify the most common plant problems and the methods to treat them.

You don’t need to be an agriculturist or an experienced farmer to do this. Even basic knowledge about plants will get you far. To gain these skills, spend time in your garden every day, observe the plants, and if you see something suspicious, take action and do it immediately.

Don’t underestimate yourself if you find problems with your plants. This issue is common to all gardeners and even plant experts.

How Do You Identify Plant Problems?

In common, leaves get infested by diseases and insects. In addition, the insects affect the plants both above and below the ground level. So, this means that you can expect these problems to be profound.

Other symptoms or issues like a fruit drop, shrinking leaves, stunted growth, leaves color changes, shriveling roots, etc. These are the main problems you can and identify when you observe your plants. The primary purpose of identifying plant problems is to take recovery measures before these issues can cause more harm to your plants.

Diagnosing Problems

Sometimes, you may find it challenging to identify the exact problem your plant is facing. You haven’t probably even heard of the pest that’s harming your plants. Whatever the issue is, you must apply a wide range of solutions to control these pests and diseases. You should follow organic or biocontrol solutions or even rely on chemicals to eliminate them if the situation has gone really bad.

What Are The Most Common Plant Problems And The Solutions To Them?

Next, let’s have a closer look at the most common plant diseases and the solutions to fix them:

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1. Leaf Spots

Leaf spots are a common problem occurring in plants caused by fungi and bacteria. You can differentiate the spots based on symptoms on the leaves.

What Does Fungal Leaf Spot Look Like?

If the spot is brown with a yellow halo, then it is caused by fungi. You can also see tiny black dots inside the brown area if you observe them more closely.

What Does A Bacterial Leaf Spot Look Like?

On the flip side, if you find water-soaked yellow spots on the leaf, it’s a bacterial infection. Also, as with the fungal one, try to know the primary symptoms and causing organism based on this to fix it.

Does Leaf Spot Kill Plants?

If you don’t fix this problem, either the leaf or a part of the leaf dies. Leaf spot isn’t that dangerous to established plants if you get rid of it in time, but young or unestablished plants can wilt and die.

How To Get Rid Of Leaf Spot On Plants?

This issue needs your immediate attention, where you remove all the affected leaves. If you are growing indoors, you should somehow increase the plants’ air circulation to prevent further problems. Also, take care by not allowing water to stand on the leaves.

2. Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew is a white dusty or powdery coating on the leaves and shoots of the plant. It is the fungal growth of the plant. Due to this disease, leaves may drop or be distorted. The main reason for this disease is planting in shady areas. The place where air circulation is not good, this issue occurs.

How Do I Get Rid Of Powdery Mildew?

Improve the air circulation and avoid shady areas. Remove the infected or affected leaves first. Then, spray copper or sulfur-based fungicide to control the issue. You can also prevent overhead watering, especially at night.

3. Downy Mildew

Leaf discoloration on the upper part and white mold formation at the bottom part are the symptoms of downy mildew. Fungus-like organisms are the root cause of this disease. You can spot this disease, especially when the weather is wet.

How Do I Get Rid Of Downy Mildew?

Firstly, avoid placing separate plants too close to each other to reduce this disease. Remove the affected leaves, throw them away, and never water the plants in the evening. Improve air circulation of the plants, and avoid saturated soils to control this disease.

4. Blight Disease

If you see yellow spots turning into brown ones on top of the leaves, it’s called blight disease. But, again, cool and wet weather are the main reasons for it to occur.

How To Control Blight Disease?

Remove the plants affected by the diseases, and ensure proper spacing between separate plants to avoid spreading.

5. Mosaic Or Cucumber Mosaic Virus

The streaking issue on the leaves is how you can identify this disease. Also, yellow spotting is another symptom of the mosaic virus. Finally, keep a close eye on aphids because they are the leading cause of this plant disease.

How To Control Mosaic Virus?

You need to remove the affected leaves. Then, follow aphid control measures as recommended.

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6. Root And Stem Rot

Black or brown roots are the main symptom of this rot issue. If you leave the plant untreated, the plant can wilt or even die in the worst-case scenario.

How To Treat Root And Stem Rot?

Remove the affected root and replant it in a pot. Don’t overwater your plants or remove the infected plants altogether.

7. Black Spot

As you may guess, you will see black spots on top of the leaves. You can even find fringed margins in the affected part of the plant. This disease occurs commonly in roses, and the cause behind it is very often fungi.

How Do You Get Rid Of Black Spots On Leaves?

Avoid overcrowding your plants to reduce the issue, and don’t keep the affected plants close to healthy ones or get rid of them altogether. Spraying copper and sulfur-based fungicide solutions to them is one way to get rid of them.

8. Wilt Disease

Due to water loss, the plants may die or droop, and the common cause behind wilt disease is fungi or bacteria.

How To Control Wilt Disease?

We all know that plants need water, but avoid overwatering and remember to provide the plant some afternoon shade. Also, you can even use some low nitrogen but high phosphorus fertilizer to prevent this disease.

9. Damping Off Disease

Soil-borne fungi are the reason for this plant disease, and it majorly affects seedlings. It’s common to see this problem in plants growing in a wet and humid climate.

How To Control Damping Off Disease?

In a sealed package, the two most effective ways to control the damping-off disease are to avoid crowding the seedlings and providing proper ventilation for them.

10. Rust

Fungi causes rust disease, and you can see that when you notice rusty patches on the leaves and stems. The spots are usually orange, but their color changes to black when the disease gets even further.

How To Control Rust Disease?

You can use fungicides to prevent the spread or remove the affected plants altogether, but an important task is to remove the debris between the plants. If you want an organic way to control it, you might be happy to know that some professionals even use a baking soda mixture to prevent rust disease.

What Methods Are There To Control And Prevent Plant Diseases?

You can prevent plant diseases by following different control methods. So next, let’s take a look at the various techniques we can use to either control or prevent them.

1. Cultural Method

Many professionals practice the proper selection of seeds, adequate weeding, irrigation, selecting disease-resistant varieties, adequate planting time, crop rotation, and roguing, so it’s best to do that as well.

A Small Shovel Scooping A Weed Out Of The Ground
Elena Masiutkina/

2. Physical Methods

The various physical methods to control plant diseases are hot water treatment, solar energy treatment, and hot air treatment. For example, hot water treatment is used in the handling of smut disease.

3. Chemical Methods

Commonly seeds are treated with fungicides to avoid them getting any diseases before transplanting. And most growers, including farmers, do soil treatment to control soil-borne diseases, for example, doing something as simple as crop rotation.

4. Plant Quarantine Method

Officials are the ones usually doing this method. This method involves the legal restriction of moving seeds or plants from one place to another where the diseases are unknown or not present. The purpose of this is to avoid transporting any plant diseases to another country or area.

Final Words

You may be a lover of plants or a professional interested in getting better at growing. No matter your background, your goal as a grower, is to get rid of pests and diseases harming your plants. So if you want some last-minute tips in addition to these common plant problems, keep these things in mind:

If you aren’t sure what’s wrong with your plant, take action immediately and find out the cause. If you can’t find the answer with the help of the internet, get an opinion from an expert. Getting rid of plant diseases starts when you haven’t planted anything and what you do during the growing season. Because during these points, diseases are still avoidable.

So, keep your garden safe from diseases, remember crop rotation, don’t overwater or use mulch too much, and always sow healthy seeds. Also, try to grow with high-quality soil and space the plants correctly. With these tips in mind, you are on your way to building a disease-free garden!

Featured image credit – © Paul Maguire –

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