Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

Major Pests & Diseases of Yams

...
sweet potato image by steveinnz from Fotolia.com

Yams are a good source of vitamins and minerals and a popular food plant commercially and in home gardens. However, they do attract some pests and problems that plague them both before and after harvest. The best way to keep your yams "happy" and healthy in and out of the ground is to be aware of the signs of problems with major pests and diseases of yams. Knowing what to look for can help you avert a serious problem with your yam crop.

Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew looks like a heavy dusting of black, gray, white or pink chalk on the plant. It can attack the leaves, stems or the roots of yams. As soon as you spot the problem, use sterile pruning to remove any affected foliage and make sure that you are watering early in the morning so that water does not sit on the leaves. Dispose of infected leaf material in a sealed bag to prevent reinfection. Treat recurring infections with a fungicide.

  • Yams are a good source of vitamins and minerals and a popular food plant commercially and in home gardens.
  • The best way to keep your yams "happy" and healthy in and out of the ground is to be aware of the signs of problems with major pests and diseases of yams.

Yam Anthracnose

Yam anthracnose is a fungal infection that can impact your yam plants in any geographic region. Leaves and shoots of the yam will blacken and die, resulting in stunted, small, deformed harvests. Anthracnose can be prevented using a fungicide with benomyl, but you need to remove affected plants and all plant debris from the field immediately in order to prevent the spread of the disease.

Tuber Rots

While these fungal infections originate in the fields, they often are not fully evident at the time of harvest and may carry on and spread during storage after harvest. If you notice soft, mushy spots or hard, dry, crumbly spots on the yams themselves at harvest, then remove these yams from the rest to prevent the spread of infection. You can prevent tuber rots by making sure that soil is well-drained and doing your best to minimize the physical damage to the tube during the harvest. Make sure that your storage areas are well-aerated. Bordeaux mixture can also help alleviate or eliminate this problem.

  • Yam anthracnose is a fungal infection that can impact your yam plants in any geographic region.
  • If you notice soft, mushy spots or hard, dry, crumbly spots on the yams themselves at harvest, then remove these yams from the rest to prevent the spread of infection.

Related Articles

Root Rot on Pumpkins
Root Rot on Pumpkins
How to Grow & Harvest Yuca Root
How to Grow & Harvest Yuca Root
Are Yams Nightshade Plants?
Are Yams Nightshade Plants?
When to Plant Potatoes in Oklahoma
When to Plant Potatoes in Oklahoma
Muskmelon Diseases
Muskmelon Diseases
Brown Spots on Cucumber Leaves
Brown Spots on Cucumber Leaves
Yellow Leaves on a Sweet Pea Plant
Yellow Leaves on a Sweet Pea Plant
What Are the Causes of Brown on Tomato Plant Leaves?
What Are the Causes of Brown on Tomato Plant Leaves?
Lowest Temperatures for Pepper Plants
Lowest Temperatures for Pepper Plants
How to Plant Seed Potatoes
How to Plant Seed Potatoes
When Do You Plant Potatoes in Arkansas?
When Do You Plant Potatoes in Arkansas?
Crop Plant Identification
Crop Plant Identification
When to Plant Strawberries in North Carolina
When to Plant Strawberries in North Carolina
How to Treat Pumpkin Plant Fungus
How to Treat Pumpkin Plant Fungus
When to Plant Red Potatoes in Mississippi
When to Plant Red Potatoes in Mississippi
Optimum Soil Requirements for a Potato Plant
Optimum Soil Requirements for a Potato Plant
Garden Guides
×