Phillip Brannen, an Extension plant pathologist with the University of Georgia, recently spoke on orange rust in blackberries and a way to prevent it.
Orange rust is mostly prevalent in North Carolina. When infected, the leaves on the cane will turn yellow after developing in the spring. The back of the leaves will be covered in orange, pimple-like bumps. Because orange rust is a systemic rust, a plant cannot be cured once infected. The entire plant has to be destroyed to prevent further spread.
Brannen recommends spraying blackberries with fungicides every year in order to prevent orange rust as well as other rusts that can impact blackberries.
Brannen stresses the importance of being able to differentiate orange rust from other rusts. “It’s very important to identify it and distinguish it from the leaf and cane rust,” which he says is different because it can be sprayed for without destroying the plant. In order to take the right course of action, Brannen recommends growers seek help in identifying which rust has infected their plants.
Listen to the full interview:
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