black powdery stuff on my leaves

judo_and_peppers(Tampa FL)September 19, 2013

this stuff is all over the leaves of many of my plants, but only on the tops of the leaves (except for the goofy leaves that are upside down). if you wipe it it comes off. I'm inclined to think it's from the pollution in the air (tampa is dirty), since my car gets dirty really fast here, even though I'm barely using it (do most my commuting via bike). it's on non pepper plants too, but not as bad. my gut instinct is that it's no big deal, but my gut instinct seems to be wrong a lot, so I'm doing the smart thing and asking about it here. it's on the pods too, so I always wash them really good with soap and water before I use them.

(for the record I took a pic of the worst looking leaves I could find, most of it isn't nearly that bad)

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Looks like a bit of sooty mold...if you've had aphid issues with this plant (or other sucking pests) this may be what's going on.

There's not much to be done about it besides rinsing wish a strong blast of water or otherwise washing the controlling the pests.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2013 at 10:06PM
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judo_and_peppers(Tampa FL)

well that explains it. I've got aphids AND whiteflies. the aphids are rather recent. I f***ing hate whiteflies, so very very much.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2013 at 1:33AM
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judo_and_peppers(Tampa FL)

I've done some reading. apparently the peppers are still quite edible as long as I keep washing them off, but it interferes with photosynthesis.

so I'm considering taking a bucket of a mild soap solution and wiping every leaf, top and bottom. I figure this will take out a lot of the aphids and whiteflies while I'm at it. the downside is this will probably be a long project, even with only 14 plants.

any thoughts on doing this? good or bad idea?

    Bookmark   September 21, 2013 at 1:09AM
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It's harmless to both plant and fruit...well, technically it can get bad enough that leaves no longer photosynthesize and they die off, but it doesn't invade plant tissue or fruit. It's safe to wash and eat any fruit, no doubt.

It's more annoying than it is deadly unless it covers so much of the plant that the leaves die out from being covered.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2013 at 2:15AM
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I use soap/water in a hose end sprayer and wash the aphids/whitefly and soot away.....I like Dr Bronners peppermint castile soap....from a health food store.....

Applied at dusk to avoid the bees......Rinse the plants in the AM if you notice a residue of soap on the leaves.....

Neem, Pyrethroids, Soap and Oil are all recomended for Whitefly and Aphid control in Florida


    Bookmark   September 21, 2013 at 11:43AM
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