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Extension > Garden > Diagnose a problem > What's wrong with my plant? > Vegetable > Asparagus > Discolored fern

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Asparagus > Fern > Discolored fern

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Asparagus Rust
Puccinia asparagi

  • No symptoms on spears
  • Pale orange ovals on lower stems of fronds in spring
  • In summer reddish brown, spots form on fronds and stems
  • Reddish, rust-colored, powdery spores rub off on hands and equipment
  • Spots turn black in fall
  • Infected foliage dries and dies prematurely
  • More information on Asparagus Rust...
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  • Image: Fusarium Wilt 1
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Fusarium Root and Crown Rot
Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. asparagi, Fusarium proliferatum

  • Infected seedlings are stunted, yellow and may die
  • Plants throughout field have a few yellow stunted shoots
  • Overtime, plants decline
  • Reddish brown lesions on lower stems and roots
  • Crown develops a dry brown rot
  • Older plants in low lying areas, or those stressed by drought or other factor are most severely affected
  • More information on Fusarium Root and Crown Rot...
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Cercospora Leaf Spot
Cercospora asparagi

  • Oval lesions with tan or gray center and reddish brown border
  • Lower portion of ferns turn brown, eventually moving upward
  • Entire fern may die by mid-season
  • Amount of spears in the following year may be less
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  • Image: Fusarium Wilt 1
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Purple Spot
Stemphylium vesicarium

  • Oval lesions with tan or gray center and reddish brown border
  • Lower portion of ferns turn brown, eventually moving up plant
  • Entire fern may turn yellow and die by mid season
  • Disease often most severe when plants are big enough to crowd one another
  • More information on Purple Spot...

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