Diseases of ginger

Avoiding disease

Proper protocols go a long way in preventing problems with your rhizome crops. Ginger is particularly susceptible to a multitude diseases due to its fleshy nature and inability to form true seed. Ginger must be divided vegetatively. Often a farmer will carry forward disease in the seed.

There are many ways potential pathogens can find their way to your ginger and turmeric, the main four being the following:

• In seed pieces

• Brought in by feet, hands and tools

• Insect vectors

• Contaminated soil


How to avoid disease

1. Only plant the best quality ginger seed pieces. Using ginger that was originally grown for consumption as seed is risky bizness.

2. Isolate your plantings from high traffic areas and disinfect your hands, boots, and tools if you're going to work with your plants.

3. Rotate your crops. The further the distance you put between last years crop the better. Unfortunately, this can be difficult in a greenhouse environment, which makes the other steps that much more important.

4. Control pests. Larval pests like lesser cornstalk borer and wire worms are documented to vector Fusarium in corn, and if they can spread disease in corn then they most definitely can in ginger.

5. Populate your soil with beneficial microbes. Some beneficial microbes colonize the soil structure and others are actively antagonistic toward pathogens.