Anthracnose: Preventing Leaf Spots and Blights On Your Plants

Ed Wike
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Anthracnose Overview

This is a fungus that’s visible right around the time the leaves first start to appear on your favorite ornamental plants. It’s going to be a burgundy or dark-colored splotches on the leaves. At the beginning stages it’s going to be larger lesions, almost like a paint splotch. And eventually, it will kind of span out to all the leaves.


The first appearance that you’re going to see this on your plants is going to be on the soon-to-be-exposed leaves. It’s going to be a very dark, oval-shaped splotching, almost looking like a paint splotch. It’s going to be all over the leaf. Later on, it’s also going to spread out to the older leaves too. It’s going to turn everything a dark burgundy color.

What Is Anthracnose?

It’s a fungus that can plague a wide variety of plants. While some spots are just cosmetic, anthracnose can be deadly to your plants. You may find it affecting the leaves or the fruit or both. In some cases, the lower foliage is affected and the top foliage is fine. This can be a common symptom of both apple stunt and anthracnose.

The fungus grows in humid, rainy conditions and overfertilizing your plants can increase the likelihood of anthracnose attacking. The funds can spread by spores from one leaf to the next or by rain splashing the spores onto to the unaffected leaves. It can take as long as two weeks for your plant to show the first signs. The disease is particularly seductive and the leaves may look fine until you start noticing more and more spots. The fungus attacks the leaves' tissue and devours it, leaving areas on the leaves that are lighter than the rest of the leaf or have bronzed or brownish color.