WSU Extension


Cucumber, Pumpkin, Squash : Root rot
(revision date: 6/3/2014)

Several species of fungi can cause a wilting and root rot of squash and related plants. Above-ground symptoms may not be noticed until vines wilt and collapse during hot weather. Typical symptoms include rot of the root system, with a soft, dark brown, mushy rot affecting the base of the stem. Affected plants generally have abnormally small root systems and may break off easily near the soil line. The fungi can survive for several years in the soil.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Do not plant squash into areas where disease occurred previously. Long crop rotations (3-5 years or more) may be useful.
  • Choose planting sites carefully, as wet soils favor disease development. Squash and related crops prefer light, well-drained soils.
  • Avoid overwatering.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

None recommended

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Caption: Top to bottom: root rot, healthy, Fusarium wilt, healthy
Photo by: R.S. Byther