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Fungi Problems

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Problems - fungi

Fungi is a big problem on the areoles of Ferocactus plants. It is also a frequent secondary effect of a red spider mite attack.

This Ferocactus emoryi has black sooty mold on its areoles. Ferocactus plants secrete a sort of nectar from a gland situated on its areoles. The secretion is perfect as fungi food - especially when the weather is humid.

Prevention is better than cure in this case. Application of fungicide and cleaning the affected areoles won't return the plant to its original state. At best, you will end up with gray-coloured areoles. On the bright side, this problem is almost never fatal. You just end up with a less-than-perfect specimen.

This succulent is has its growing points decimated by fungi attack. The fungi looks a lot like black sooty mould. Although the growing point dies off, the succulent usually never completely die off. This plant can be saved. Your quest to grow a perfect specimen, however, will necessarily be postponed.

A secondary attack of fungi following a primary attack of red spider mite is a major killer of cacti and succulents, especially in collections which are exposed to a hot, humid and dusty environment. That's a perfect description of most parts of Kuala Lumpur, by the way.

The Melocactus shown on the left has got a few patches of black fungi and scarring resulting from a scale insect attack. If not cared for properly, the plant may go into decline and rot. Frequently, the plant is considerably weakened and any further problems might be fatal. Be prepared to say adios to this plant.


In order to avoid fungi attacks, you have to:

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  Last modified: 2002-08-26  Copyright © 1997-2002.  Kein-Hong Man.  all rights reserved