Notes from the field: Our plight with late blight

We are devastated to announce that the late blight has hit our farm and that we now must destroy all of our potato and tomato plants. Completely destroying these plants will hopefully give us more control over the blight, however, we must act fast because the blight can travel hundreds of miles by air. The fungus that causes the blight can live in the soil up to five years, which is why every spore must be destroyed completely. This also means the potatoes which were produced from the blight-impacted plants must all be destroyed and cannot be used to as seed potatoes for next season.

What does this mean for our other plants in the field? We are currently treating our eggplants and pepper plants with copper sulfate at the direction of the Brown County Extension Office. We are hopeful that we can save these plants from being effected by the blight. The copper sulfate will hopefully prevent the blight from spreading to these plants.

What causes the blight? The late blight is caused by a fungus, which is encouraged by the cooler, wet weather that we have recently experienced. The late blight also will spread hundreds of miles when the weather is ideal for it. This is what has caused the blight to affect many farmers within the Northeastern part of our state.

We, as farmers, are aware of the risks when we set out to plant our fields at the beginning of the season. We understand that the perfect tomato can only grow with the perfect balance of rain and sunshine. We pray that each season our farm will not be impacted by any devastating disease, like blight. Unfortunately, this season we were not able to avoid the devastation of the loss of our potato and tomato crops. We apologize to our loyal customers, although it does not appear there is anything that can be done to prevent these types of things. And most importantly, we appreciate your continued loyalty during this difficult time.

Check out the video posted by the Green Bay Press Gazette featuring Kellner Back Acre Gardens’ plight with the blight.

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