- Millet

Millet Millet

Downy Mildew of Millet


Sclerospora graminicola

In a Nutshell

  • Floral sections show leafy structures.
  • Fungal growth on the underside of the leaves.
  • Yellow patches on the leaves.
  • No production of panicles.
 - Millet

Millet Millet


The base of the leaf lamina becomes yellow in color. The floral sections show leafy structures and can also grow pale. Under severe conditions the plant becomes stunted and does not produce panicles.

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The symptoms are caused by Sclerospora graminicola and can vary widely according to host, environmental conditions and duration of the disease. The disease is also known as Green Ear Disease, since the floral sections of the plant are transformed into leaf-like structures. The spores of Downy Mildew survive in the soil, on infected crop residues and in seeds. Fungal spores are transported in the soil by water and overground by wind and water.

Organic Control

Treat your seeds with Pseudomonas fluorescens and later spray it on the seedlings. Bioagents like Trichoderma harzianum (20 g per 1 kg seeds), Pesudomonas fluorescens and Bacillus species (10 g per 1 kg seeds) also help manage the disease as seed treatment.

Chemical Control

Always consider an integrated approach with preventive measures together with biological treatments if available. To prevent a seed borne contamination, you should treat seeds with fungicides like captan, fludioxonil, metalaxyl or thiram. Metalaxyl can also be used to directly control downy mildew.

Preventive Measures

  • Use disease-free seed material.
  • Plant resistant varieties.
  • Treat seeds routinely with a fungicide.
  • Apply farmyard manure at 5 tons per ha mixed with soil in the seed furrows.
  • Remove infected plants immediately.
  • After harvest destroy plant debris by either burning or plowing.

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