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Extension > Garden > Yard and Garden > Vegetables > Diseases of cucurbits > Anthracnose

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Anthracnose

Michelle Grabowski

three pumpkins with brown holes

M. Grabowski, University of Minnesota

close up of pumpkin with brown holes

M. Grabowski, University of Minnesota

close up of stem with brown spots

M. Grabowski, University of Minnesota

leaf with brown spots

M. Grabowski, University of Minnesota

cucumber plant with yellow spots on leaves

M. Grabowski, University of Minnesota

Anthracnose is caused by the fungus, Colletotrichum orbiculare. This pathogen can attack all cucurbits but the most severe disease is seen on cucumbers, muskmelons, and watermelons.

Identification

All above ground plant parts can be infected. Symptoms vary depending on which cucurbit is infected.

Important biology

The Anthracnose fungus can survive in infected plant debris, in and on the seed. Spores are produced on infected leaves and fruit. These are easily spread by splashing rain, irrigation, on workers hands or equipment. The disease is favored by warm, moist environmental conditions and often is first seen mid to late season after the canopy closes. During wet summers, disease can be quite severe.

Management

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