Bean Rust

tanya47July 2, 2009

Help. My kentucky wonder beans are hit with rust, last year they went great all summer. this year, i am in a community garden, and my neighbour to the east is growing huge sunflowers which are shading the beans.

will cutting off the infected leaves help? do i need to just take out the plants entirely. I don't want it to infect my bush limas, only a few feet away.

help. is it too late, July 1, to plant some fortex for late summer, fall?

Thanks for all advice!!!!!

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zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin

My sympathies. I went through that with my own "Kentucky Wonder" beans in the 1990's, during a very cool, wet summer... kind of like this one. My vines were over-crowded at the time, which didn't help matters.

Moisture is your enemy, so do not use overhead irrigation. If you are to have any hope of saving the plants, you need to provide enough airflow for the leaves to breathe - and dry out. This might necessitate some thinning, and perhaps some removal of foliage. This will not cure the disease, however, only slow its spread. It might give you time to harvest whatever beans might already be growing.

Tanya, I lived in SoCal for quite a few years; does your area suffer from the "June gloom"? I'm guessing that's the main problem. The coastal fogs in the morning keep the leaves wet, and can make it very difficult to deal with rust. If you can't keep the vines dry right now, you still might be able to save them. Pick off all of the leaves, and any flowers or pods, and dispose of them. If they are kept watered, the stems should sprout new leaves & branches - hopefully about the time that the fogs disappear.

If you want to just start over, you have plenty of time to do so. "Fortex" would be a good choice, since it has demonstrated excellent resistance to rust. You might want to move them further away from the sunflowers, if that is at all possible.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2009 at 3:18AM
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Zeedman, Yes you hit it right on the nail...June gloom here in Santa Monica has been thick this spring.
I have been vigilant not to do any overhead watering or spraying in my garden, I am a beginner gardener, and I am learning that, with good mulch, I don't hardly need to water at all.
The other problem with my neighbor is that she does spray water, every evening! I have( nicely ) asked her NOT to overspray on to my plants, but she really doesnt get it at all
Thank you for you good advice!! I will follow it, and plant some fortex elsewhere in my plot.
very best regards!!!

    Bookmark   July 3, 2009 at 11:27AM
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