Disease: Leaf Spot of TomatoPathogen: Septoria lycopersiciHost: Tomato, Lycopersicum esculentum
Tomatoes are among the most widely grown crops grown in gardens throughout the world. Most gardens in the US have a tomato or two because they are so useful in the kitchen. One of the most common diseases of tomato is leaf spot. This disease is caused by a fungus called Septoria lycopersici and it can be devastating to commercial producers who have many plants and to homeowners who may have just one or two plants. The disease is difficult to control and can lead to death of the plant if not managed properly. Commercial producers rely on disease resistance, fungicides and a variety of cultural methods. Homeowners can protect their garden tomatoes most easily by buying healthy seedlings at reputable markets, by removing diseased leaves as they appear and destroying the infected tissue, and by minimizing the amount of moisture on leaves by removing weeds and not watering plants with overhead methods since the disease is easily spread by water.