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

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Asparagus > Spear > Deformed spear

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  • Image: Powdery Mildew 1
  • Image: Powdery Mildew 2
  • Image: Powdery Mildew 3

Common Asparagus Beetle
Crioceris asparagi

  • Adult feeding on asparagus spear causes spear to bend over into a shepherd's crook
  • Adults also feed on ferns; can severely defoliate plant
  • Larvae are slug-like, and light gray with a black head
  • Adult beetles are ¼ inch long, oval-shaped, bluish-black with six cream colored spots on its back
  • More information on Common Asparagus Beetle...
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  • Image: Powdery Mildew 1
  • Image: Powdery Mildew 2
  • Image: Powdery Mildew 3

Spotted Asparagus Beetle
Crioceris duodecimpunctata

  • Adult feeding on asparagus spear causes spear to bend over into a shepherd's crook
  • Larvae feed on berries, but do not damage the overall health of the plant
  • Adult beetles are ¼-inch long, oval-shaped, reddish-orange with twelve black spots
  • Larvae are slug-like, and yellowish-orange
  • More information on Spotted Asparagus Beetle...
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  • Image: Fusarium Wilt 1
  • Image: Fusarium Wilt 2
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Phytophthora Crown and Spear Rot
Phytophthora megasperma

  • Spear has a soft dark water soaked lesion at the soil line
  • Spear curls over the infected side and eventually collapses
  • Infected part of spear is slimy and may smell bad
  • Roots have water soaked spots
  • Crown turns yellow
  • In severe infections plant may die
  • More information on Phytophthora Crown and Spear Rot...
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  • Image: Fusarium Wilt 1
  • Image: Fusarium Wilt 2

Asparagus Aphid
Brachycorynella asparagi

  • Feed on asparagus fern
  • Aphid causes "witch's broom", a bushy appearance to the ferns
  • High aphid populations will reduce plant vigor and yield or kill seedlings
  • Active during spring and summer
  • Small insects (1/10th inch long), pear-shaped, pale green and powdery

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