Harmful to both people and plants, theAlternaria Alternata it is a fungus that unfortunately we can also find in common gardens and we must therefore equip ourselves to fight it in the most appropriate and effective way, both to protect ourselves from our health and for the integrity of our seedlings which can end up destroyed under its attack.
Above all, all those who already have allergies and therefore may be more likely not to tolerate their presence must be careful and, if they have a vegetable garden, a garden or a rich and flourishing terrace, they must be particularly cautious and prepared. If you have never heard of Alternaria Alernata, the time has come to know it and to understand how to defend yourself from this terrible fungus.
Alternaria Alternata: what it is
There are different types of Alternaria and with this term we are anxious to indicate them all. It is a plant fungus which in many cases is responsible for the formation of a certain type of yellow or green mold that we can very frequently find on fruit and vegetables when they are in a state of decomposition, or even in environments where there is a high level of humidity.
In the vast genus of fungi of this type, we can recognize two categories, that of parasitic species and that of saprophytes. In the first case we find all the fungi that live and proliferate causing damage to the species that host them, feeding on their backs, in the second case they are fungi that feed only on decaying or already dead organic matter
Within this genus of mushrooms we find thealternaria alternata, certainly it is one of the best known species. It produces spores within a rather characteristic hollow area called the ascus, and these are very small spores, and for this very reason they can easily be inhaled. A bit like small particles of atmospheric particulate matter can slip into our lungs and therefore create problems for people. Let's go from cough and allergic conjunctivitis but due to alternaria alternating they can also occur skin problems, respiratory disorders and allergic rhinitis.
Alternaria: threat to tomatoes, potatoes and pears
Now that we understand how it is not pleasant to deal with this mushroom, let's understand where it grows and how to recognize it. Check above all on leaves, fruits and vegetables like these
To understand if we are in the presence of an Alternaria Alternata attack, here is what we need to note. The presence of small lesions especially near the area of the baby even if they can appear anywhere. They usually have a size of about 2 millimeters and from small cuts they turn into spots that go into necrosis and become covered with mold, yes, that greenish or brownish mold that we have described and which can also have yellowish halos.
When the fungus attacks the leaves it is usually unmaskable due to the appearance of black spotsand that first appear scattered but then become a single dark and necrotic spot. In the long run you can even see the plant die or see it dry out in all its leaves.
Less frequently but thealternaria alternata prolifera has in humid environments, or those in which there is a humidity level above 65% and a temperature remains between 18 ° C and 32 ° C. The spores spin in the air and can be easily breathed in if the weather is favorable. In Italy this usually happens in the summer from May to November even if climate change has somewhat reshuffled the cards. The worst period is usually that between the end of summer and the beginning of autumn, when the spores are very present in the air and if a little wind blows they can also be carried for hundreds of kilometers by the wind.
How to fight Alternaria
It attacks fruits and vegetables and even plants and even damages our health, it is clear that it is necessary to fight their presence and this is how we can do it. The best way to avoid major damage is to prevent, because if the attack is already underway we only have poor attempts to make such as to eliminate infected leaves, fruit and infected crop residues or to free ourselves from whole plants if they are too damaged. There are products that can help us combat alternating alternaria, they are based on copper sulphate or suitable fungicides. On Amazon we can find several and among the most effective we recommend evaluating this.
We try to prevent it, however, which is much easier and gives better results. It starts from sowing, indeed, from the purchase of seeds or seedlings which must be certified on the one hand and well controlled on the other. They must assure us that they have not been affected by any disease and any such fungus. For prudence what is best to do is a bath in hot water with seeds we bought, before using them.
Other useful tips? here they are
- Three-year crop rotation
- Copper-based treatments
- Treatments with horsetail-based macerates
- Avoid fertilizing with not fully decomposed manure
- Avoid the creation of water stagnation
Allergy to Alternaria
In humans, Alternaria Alternata causes allergic reactions which can be serious. We have already listed the symptoms and it is best to protect ourselves first. This means following a series of indications that are then the basis of personal and domestic hygiene. We store food properly and in the presence of mold, throw it away. We carefully clean the heating systems because mold may have formed in there too. We often ventilate the house by using a dehumidifier to lower the internal humidity rate. We avoid storing damp clothes in the closet or closed drawers. If we have a stove and a fireplace and therefore a lot of wood, let's not store it in humid environments