How to prevent the ‘American leaf spot of coffee’?

When the rainy season ends, moisture decreases, temperature rises and there is more ventilation in coffee plantations, which confronts the development of the disease known as “ojo de gallo” or American leaf spot of coffee. That’s why it is the perfect time to treat the disease and try to avoid bigger damage in the crops. However, what is the ‘American leaf spot of coffee’? Here you have the most important information about it:

What is the ‘American leaf spot of coffee’?

It is the disease caused by the fungus Mycena citricolor, which appears mostly on high and mid height zones, where frequently rains and fog banks appears. The disease affects both leaves and fruits.

What are the symptoms?

Leaves are affected by the formation of dark spots, with circular or oval shape when the injury is recent. However, when the injury is older its color turns lighter. It also causes the leaves and fruits to fall fast and unhealthy.

Which conditions boosts the ‘American leaf spot of coffee’?

Rainy season, cloudiness and low temperatures, generates ideal conditions for the fungus to reproduce, it also is boosted in dense coffee plantations which have too much shadow and are poorly ventilated, as in crops without a fertilization plan.

How can it be prevented?

To avoid the disease to become an epidemic the most convenient practice is to group treatments such as:

Don’t plant again where crops already suffered injuries due to the disease, and don’t plant more than 2500 for each 2,5 acres.

When the harvest time ends, the affected tissue must be pruned, and if it’s necessary the plantation’s density must be reduced to give it more ventilation and light.

Three months after the prune, there must be a restauration so only the strongest new plants remains to avoid shadow problems.

Control weeds or other hosts of the fungus growing around the plantation.

Follow a fertilization plan under the guidance of professionals to avoid shortcomings in plants that make them more vulnerable.

At the beginning of the rainy season, injuries that appeared in previous years are activated, so it is essential to prepare all the actions of prevention and management during the dry season.

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