Get Rid of Mold or Powdery Mildew on Squash and Cucumbers | GrowingRealFood.com

What Is This Mold or Powdery Mildew?

The other day I was in my garden and I spotted it.  Oh the dreaded powdery mold or mildew that no gardener wants to see.  How could this have happened?  

It has been quite dry this year, but a lot cooler than usual.  I am very careful on not watering the leaves, and water at the base of the plant.  So why was I getting this mildew or mold on my leaves?

I wish I had a solid answer, but as with any garden experience, it can change from one year to the next.  

So many things can play a factor in whether or not problems arise in your garden. The wind, the weather, the rain, insects and birds all can bring mold or mildew to your garden.

What To Do Once A Problem Arises

When a problem does come about, and trust me you will experience problems, then you get to add another notch to becoming an expert gardener. When it comes to gardening you can’t grow as a gardener unless you have challenges to grow from.  

Pesky pest and diseases might be a nuisance yes, but trust me when I say you will become a better gardener once you learn how to conquer these problems.

So today we are going to talk a bit about mold or a powdery mildew as shown in the first picture above and how to conquer this problem.

An All Natural Solution

I try my best to keep my garden as organic as possible.  So if I can treat a problem without chemicals, I am going to do just that.

Mold or powdery mildew is a gray or white like substance that can be furry or powdery and grows on the leaves.  It can grow on the top of the leaf or on the underside.  It can spread rather rapidly so it is best to treat it as soon as you notice it.

Todays recipe is so simple and is something everyone has in their kitchen already.  What is the magic ingredient you ask?

MILK!

Yep, you read that right, milk!  Milk naturally has proteins that can protect and help kill off any unwanted molds or mildew.  I know, who knew right?

Here Is What You Will Need

Yep, it really is this easy!  So are your ready to make this solution?

So here is what you are going to need.

  • Get a clean spray bottle.
  • Fill it with 40% milk and 60% water (any milk will do, but I use organic because that is all I have in my kitchen).
  • Shake and use.  
  • You also need the sun to make this work.

Yep, it really is that easy!

Lets Do An Example On A Zucchini Plant

Now that you have your solution, head outside on a warm sunny day and spray the areas in question.  Be sure that you spray the underside of the leaves as well.  

Allow the milk mixture to fully dry in the hot sun. This is a very important part of to making this work. The sun bakes the proteins into the leaf and kills off the unwanted mold or mildew.

Get Rid of Mold or Powdery Mildew on Squash and Cucumbers | GrowingRealFood.com

Spray liberally.  Here is what my plant looked like after I was done spraying.  Repeat again in 10 days if needed.  

Get Rid of Mold or Powdery Mildew on Squash and Cucumbers | GrowingRealFood.com

This will work on zucchini, squash, summer squash, winter squash, watermelon, pumpkins and any other gourds you could think of.

A Second Application On A Cucumber Plant

It also works on cucumbers.  Lets take a look at this picture below. In this picture is a climbing cucumber plant. You can clearly see the mold starting to form.

Get Rid of Mold or Powdery Mildew on Squash and Cucumbers | GrowingRealFood.com

I sprayed one application and this is how it looked several days later. Here I am repeating it 10 days later. Not sure it really needed it, but I was being extra cautious.

Get Rid of Mold or Powdery Mildew on Squash and Cucumbers | GrowingRealFood.com

The plant continued to thrive and look at this amazing cucumber…yep a healthy plant indeed.

Get Rid of Mold or Powdery Mildew on Squash and Cucumbers | GrowingRealFood.com

Share Your Thoughts

What about you…have you had any issues with how to get rid of mold or powdery mildew on squash and cucumber plants? 

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18 comments
Gloria Churn
Gloria Churn

I can not thank you enough for this information I will try it tomorrow Thanks aagin

Rachelle Washington
Rachelle Washington

I have 9 summer squash this year, cut back from 29 last year as I will not be freezing or canning it this year (4 varitities) 12 or so cucumbers (3 varitities). Dill pickles, bread and butter pickles, ice box refridgerator pickles plus I juice daily and freeze cucumber juice in 2 cup batches so I have MY cucumbers to drink on this winter. Plus all the winter squash, gourds, pumpkins.

Whole Lifestyle Nutrition
Whole Lifestyle Nutrition

I might have 5 plants which include all squash, cucumber, melon, zucchini and that is plenty for my family of 5.

Rachelle Washington
Rachelle Washington

I can, freeze dehyrate, what ever it takes to stay out of the store. This is food for year round and we do give friends extra that I cant put up for winter.

andraya3
andraya3

Do you think this would also work on plants where the actual squashes are becoming moldy? It's been a dry year here...yet, the ends of the squashes keep rotting and I have to keep pulling them off before they're full grown!

Whole Lifestyle Nutrition
Whole Lifestyle Nutrition

Well I am a home gardener and most home gardeners aren't that big. It is very practical for a home gardener.

Rachelle Washington
Rachelle Washington

That might work if one has a small garden but when there are lterally over 200 plants between the winter squash, summer squash, gourds, water melons, honey dews, and cantalope that is impratical.

Growing Real Food
Growing Real Food

Agree Chritine! I live in the dairy state, so am grateful that I can get my hands on some raw dairy!

Christine Canton Westerlund
Christine Canton Westerlund

Yes! Fantastic! And, by the way, it just shows how acid dairy milk is, and how much better it is to drink raw milk - if one is lucky enough - or almond or rice milk.

Growing Real Food
Growing Real Food

You welcome! I did one application and in one day, the mold disappeared...pretty amazing!

StaceyBrumhead
StaceyBrumhead

Sounds like blossom end Rot which is a calcium deficiency. Get some Epsom salt and mix into ur soil and a calcium rich fertilizer. I had the same problem. This is not related to the mildew on ur leaves.

purljamr
purljamr

@andraya3 I have had good luck with removing the affected fruits, & applying egg shells. Luckily, it was blossom end rot. Instead of composting them, rinse & swipe w/your finger the inside of the shell after you crack them. Then let them sit & dry (I accumulate them over a few days). Then, pulverize them into dust in your blender, sprinkle around the base of the plants. Usually stops the problem for me!

hallecottis
hallecottis moderator

@andraya3 probably not.  If the squash are actually moldy, then your problem might be in the root system and that is hard to recover from :(

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