The Complete Guide to Fungi in Plants: Causes, Treatment, and Prevention

Have your plants ever been attacked by fungus? You are not alone, and these phytopathogens can destroy our gardens if we do not act against them with determination.

For this reason, in this article we talk about why fungi appear, which are the most common, how to avoid them and how to fight them. Are you interested?

What are the common causes of fungal infections in the garden?

Phytopathogenic fungi are microorganisms that cause diseases in plants, posing a significant threat to agriculture and even our small gardens.

Infections, usually by phytopathogenic fungi This happens when the spores of these organisms come in contact with host plants., Once in the plant, the fungus can take up residence in the tissues, triggering a series of pathological reactions that affect plant growth and development.

Management of phytopathogenic fungi involves the use of proper agricultural practices, such as crop rotation, selection of resistant varieties, and chemical control with fungicides.

Powdery mildew on vine leaves

It is important that we are always vigilant, as our plants can be susceptible to infection we must act immediately So that their existence is not compromised.

How to prevent the appearance of fungus in my garden?

If we have an enemy in our garden when we talk about fungus, it is undoubtedly moisture. high humidity, accompanied by gloomy atmosphereThese are ideal conditions for our plants to become infected with fungi.

We must clarify something, and that is that fungi do not appear out of nowhere to cause these conditions, but when they are already present in the environment and these conditions arise, they can attack our plants more easily. Can reside.

Although it is difficult to control the specific humidity of our area and the conditions of exposure to the sun, there are some factors that we can modify under our responsibility to try to prevent the appearance of fungus. Here I leave you some recommendations:

Selection of native plants

As I always recommend, using plant varieties typical of our region is the best option to obtain a beautiful garden that is very easy to grow.

To avoid the appearance of fungus it is no exception, because Plants that adapt to our environmental conditions will also be more resistant. Fungal diseases that may appear.

choose the right place

Whenever possible, we should avoid placing our plants in the shadiest and most humid places in our garden. If this is not possible, for example, our house faces north, we must avoid planting our specimens too close to each other, because Good air circulation can help reduce humidity And hence the risk of fungal infection.

proper irrigation

Grandfather and grandson watering plants in the garden

Without a doubt, the major problem usually behind the appearance of fungus is excessive watering. Sure Control your risks and don’t overdo itBecause in addition to being able to damage your plants irreversibly, if we keep the soil constantly moist we will promote the appearance of fungi.

Not only the amount of water is important, but also the way of watering, because we should do it only at the base rather than wetting the leaves. This total irrigation of the plant should be reserved for specific occasions, such as, for example, after the appearance of suspended dust.

soil drainage

The problem of over-irrigation also has a flip side to the coin, in this case poor soil drainage. For this reason we must ensure that the soil has good drainage to avoid water stagnation, which is again favorable for the growth of fungi.

keeping tools clean

Something we always recommend is Disinfect our gardening toolssuch as before using pruning shears Prevent the spread of fungal spores From one plant to another.

We know that sometimes this is hard to do and we may think of it as unnecessary, but you can’t imagine how effective it can be for maintaining a healthy garden!

continuous monitoring

When all else fails, the difference between a diseased plant and a diseased garden is, without a doubt, regular monitoring of plants for early signs of infection.

A man monitoring the condition of his balcony plants while watering them

This will allow us Take preventive or corrective measures in timeIt is also a good idea to create a quarantine area, where we can place sick or recently purchased plants to carry out intensive monitoring and prevent these infections from spreading to the rest of our garden.

How to identify fungus on my plants?

Each specific fungal infection can present specific symptoms, although there are some general guidelines that we can monitor.

spots or lesions on leaves

Spots of different sizes and colors may appear on the leaves which may be brown, black, gray, yellow or even red. Are The spots are usually irregular And may increase in size over time.

appearance of mold or dust

The presence of white, brown or black fungus on the surface of leaves, stems or fruits is a clear sign of fungal infection. This may cause a layer of powder to appear on the surface of the plant, so if it appears on any plant we should take action without hesitation, the infection may spread while you are reading this article!

deformity of leaves or fruits

Fungal infections can cause deformities in leaves or fruits, such as curling or twisting of leaves or abnormal growth of fruits, and distinctive rotten areas may appear early in fruit set.

gray rot on strawberry plantsgray rot


Some fungal infections may cause a sticky or fluid ooze to appear on the surface of plants. It can also be the product of other infections, such as those caused by insects, but it’s never a bad idea to be cautious if fungus is involved in this chaos.

death of plant parts

In severe cases, fungal infections Leaves, stems or even the entire plant may die.Therefore it can be considered both an early and late symptom and, of course, it is the most worrying symptom that we can face.

What are the most common fungi on plants?

There are many fungi that can infect our plants, so we have written specific articles on many of them so that you have all the necessary tools to protect your garden. Still, these are the most important:


Downy mildew is a fungus that causes a white or brown powdery coating on the leaves, stems and flowers of various plants.

mold on plant leavesdowny mildew on leaves

powdery mildew

Powdery mildew can resemble mildew. It causes white spots on leaves and can affect a variety of ornamental plants and crops.


Rust is a fungal infection that causes orange spots on leaves and can affect plants such as wheat, barley and coffee.


a fungus called botrytis gray mold and affects a wide range of plants, causing flower and fruit rot. Interestingly, depending on the physiology of the plant and especially its fruit, its effects can be more or less harmful.


These fungi can cause wilting in plants such as tomatoes and cucumbers, and can also infect bulbs.

How can we treat these fungi?

If prevention is not enough and we have just realized that one of our plants is infected with a fungus, the most important thing is to take immediate action.

would be ideal Start by identifying the fungusHowever if we are not familiar with them or they are not the most common, perhaps it can be somewhat complicated.

The most important thing we should do is Isolate diseased plants to prevent spread Keep this fungus in an area with as little moisture as possible in the rest of our garden and away from other specimens.

Subsequently, whenever possible, we should eliminate its infected parts with our disinfected garden tools and apply specific fungicides to kill the fungus. In cases where this plant has been near others and we believe they may be sick from this same phytopathogen, it may be a good idea to use some Preventive fungal treatment.

Man spraying anti-fungal treatment

Juanjo Rodríguez (Diario Dun Nano Labrego) explains that to treat tomato diseases caused by fungus in his garden, he sprays Bordeaux broth and, after seven days, sprays horsetail macerate.

As you have seen, fungi can always appear in our garden, even if our plants seem to grow in the most favorable conditions. For this reason we must remain vigilant and take immediate action when we encounter them to prevent their spread.

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