Of the dozens of fungal diseases that can strike cannabis plants, powdery mildew is one of the most common. It attacks the leaves and flowers of the plant, coating them in a white mildew dust. While this disease rarely results in the death of a plant, it does render flowers unsellable.
Powdery mildew first appears on the lower branches of a plant. Because this typically goes unnoticed by gardeners for a few days, this pathogen is able to begin making its way up, with the destination of the flowers and cola. At this point, the window of opportunity to save the flowers is quickly closing.
Powdery Mildew Moves Fast
The most frightening aspect of powdery mildew is the speed with which it can lay a path of destruction in an otherwise healthy cannabis garden. Its swiftness is just one more reason that cultivators should inspect their gardens with regularity—preferably daily.
Like all diseases and infestations of cannabis, prevention is the best strategy. A garden environment featuring sufficient ventilation, proper humidity levels (40-45 percent), and a manicured canopy that permits light to reach lower leaves is the best way to prevent powdery mildew.
Powdery mildew first appears on the lower branches of a cannabis plant and begins making its way up, with the destination of the precious flowers.
As master cannabis gardeners often testify, disease and infestation simply happen—regardless of how carefully a grow environment is monitored and balanced. Sometimes even minor environmental stressors, such as short light disruptions during the dark cycle or pH levels that go slightly askew, will weaken a plant, making it more susceptible to infestation or diseases like powdery mildew.
An increasing number of cannabis cultivators are embracing organic gardening. But how can a conscientious pot grower who wishes to remain environmentally friendly do battle with a fast acting plant disease like powdery mildew?
Embracing an Organic Solution
Today savvy West Coast farmers producing some of the nation’s most impressive cannabis are turning to certified organic solutions like PathogenZERO. This unique product, formulated by a third-generation cannabis farmer from Northern California, can be used to treat more than 150 diseases and infestations, including gray mold, powdery mildew, and spider mites.
Social media continues to bristle with the recent news from Steep Hill Labs that 85 percent of the San Francisco Bay Area “medical” cannabis evaluated by the company tested positive for fungicide myclobutanil (marketed by Dow AgroSciences as Eagle 20).
While approved by some government agencies and regulatory bodies for use in ingested food, this is a very different avenue of consumption than inhalation. Unfortunately, when heated (as during smoking), myclobutanil converts to highly poisonous hydrogen cyanide.
Such news is driving conscientious cannabis cultivators from products like Eagle 20 to fully organic biodegradable solutions like PathogenZERO. Non-toxic products of this type that contain only natural ingredients must be adopted en masse if legal pot growers wish to survive the onslaught of government regulation that looms on the horizon.