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Home Grown: Prevention tips to avoid downy mildew

YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - In today's Home Grown, prevention is the best way to limit crops from getting a disease.

That's according to German-based chemical company BASF.

They created a new product that can help prevent crops from contracting fungi like downy mildew, a problem farmers in Yuma County are battling.

"It's actually not truly a fungus," said Dr. Kevin Kaffrey, regional tech services representative with BASF. "It falls in kind of the water mold category, so a lot of the products that primarily work on your fungal pathogens don't actually work on downy mildew. It takes a whole different class of chemistry to control a very damaging disease that can have huge economic issues to lettuce growers."

Aside from chemical prevention methods, there are two other ways to avoid spreading or contracting downy mildew.

The first is to pick a variety that is not as susceptible to the fungus.

This requires trial and error with the seed industry to create lettuce varieties that uses less water.

Another preventative measure is don't create an environment where downy mildew can thrive which is in humid areas.

Article Topic Follows: Home Grown
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April Hettinger

April was born and raised in San Diego where she loved the beach town and her two dogs, Lexi and Malibu. She decided to trade the beach for the snow and advanced her education at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff.

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