Blight has struck our potatoes!

This is a very common disease that has affected many crops this year because of the warm damp conditions. Healthy looking potato plants turn into a brown soggy mess almost over night.

Blight is caused by a fungus that starts in the leaves and can spread to the tubers. Affected tubers may be firm at first but soon become rotten in store.


The first sign of blight is dark patches on the leaves, a fine white fungal growth may be seen on the underside. The leaves and stems soon shrivel and collapse.

What to do:

  • When the plants become badly infected cut off the foliage to ground level.
  • Collect up all the debris, ideally it should be burned rather than composted.
  • The potatoes can be dug up and eaten fresh.
  • If you want to try and store the potatoes leave them in the ground for 2 weeks for the skin to harden before digging them up.
  • Ensure you lift all the potatoes as any that are left in the soil will resprout and spread the disease the following year.

Try growing resistant varieties such as ‘Sharpo’, although all previous resistant varieties are now susceptible to the disease.

Operate crop rotation to reduce the risk of infection.