Identifying Harmless “False White Mold” in Peanut Fields

Identifying Harmless “False White Mold” in Peanut Fields

Photo taken by Andrew Sawyer, UGA Wilcox County Extension of false white mold.

This article is from an educational update email from Dr. Bob Kemerait, UGA Plant Pathologist.  Dr. Kemerait gave permission for Panhandle Ag to use this to share with the growers of Florida.

Andrew Sawyer, UGA Wilcox County Extension, sent me these great pictures yesterday afternoon.  They are images of what we call “false white mold” which is caused by the fungus Phanerochaete.  This is NOT the white mold, aka stem rot, that causes so much damage to our peanut crop and growers SHOULD NOT spray anything for it.  False white mold does NOT harm the plant; in fact the real damage false white mold can cause is that growers spend money unnecessarily fighting it.

Picture of false white mold, taken by Andrew Sawyer, UGA Wilcox County Extension.

False white mold is most often found in fields planted using conservation tillage, where the white fungal growth covers both the limbs of the peanut crop and the associated crop debris.  Early in its growth and development, the Phanerochaete fungus appears nearly identical to the white mold/stem rot pathogen and all-around bad guy Sclerotium rolfsii.  However, as False white mold ages it begins to turn a yellow-orange color and takes on a toothed or hairy appearance.  False white mold NEVER produces BB-sized sclerotia like Sclerotium rolfsii does.

A final difference, no lesions form beneath the fungal growth of Phanerochaete; they often form beneath the fungal growth of Sclerotium rolfsii.


2018 Extension Farm Field Day – August 10

2018 Extension Farm Field Day – August 10

On Friday, August 10th, the 2018 Extension Farm Field Day will take place at the UF/IFAS West Florida Research and Education Center (4253 Experiment Road, Hwy 182, Jay, FL 32565). Registration starts at 8, with the field tours starting promptly at 8:30.

The following topics will be covered:

  • Photo by Judy Biss

    Pest Management in Row Crops

  • Technologies for Topdressing Cotton

  • Peanut Variety Characteristics, Performance and Management

  • Cotton and Soybean Varieties

  • Effects of Peanut Plant Density on Yield and Maturity

  • Impacts of Crop Management Decisions on Cotton Diseases

  • Managing Peanut Diseases

  • Extend and Enlist Systems Update for Cotton Production


Florida pesticide CEUs and CCA points will be available.  

Please register by calling Robin Vickers at 850-983-7134 or 850-393-7334.


Dry Weather has not deterred the Dragons among Us

Dry Weather has not deterred the Dragons among Us

A dragonfly’s discarded exoskeleton after molting. Photo by Libbie Johnson

During a pond visit to the dry northern part of Escambia County, something caught my eye floating along the margins of the pond.

There, on the shore, perched on a blade of grass, was an empty dragonfly exoskeleton and a newly emerged adult dragonfly (see image below).  Dragonflies and damselflies belong to the Odonata order, one of the most widely recognized and popular orders of insects.  For anyone who has ever watched a dragonfly, they are virtually unmatched in their flying ability.  They have large eyes that take up nearly their entire head, and a very large body that helps support their agile wings. In the picture below, the adult dragonfly had recently emerged and was found drying its wings on nearby aquatic vegetation.  Dragonflies have to develop a hard body before it can be an effective flyer and continue it’s life cycle. For more information about dragonflies, visit this University of Florida Publication on Dragonflies.

This newly emerged dragonfly is drying its wings getting ready for its first flight. Photo by Libbie Johnson


Immature dragonflies are called naiads (below), and are found primarily in aquatic environments where they grow until they are ready to emerge from the water as fully formed adult dragonflies like the one above.  Naiads are heavy feeders, and one of their main food sources are mosquito larvae, but they can also feed on small fish and frogs.  They molt several times before they take the form of what we know as a dragonfly.

A closeup of a Naiad dragonfly showing its formidable mandibles used for catching prey.  Photo by Seth Bybee, University of Florida



34th Annual FSA – UF/IFAS Seedsmen Seminar – May 30

34th Annual FSA – UF/IFAS Seedsmen Seminar – May 30

Symptom of gummy stem blight on watermelon. Photo by Mathews Paret

Members, Friends, and Supporters of the Florida Seed Association (FSA) are invited to attend the Florida Seed Association annual meeting. The 34th Annual FSA – UF/IFAS Seedsmen Seminar will take place on Wednesday May 30th, 2018.  The event will take place at the Florida Farm Bureau Building, 5700 SW 34th Street, Gainesville, Florida. The cost is $75 for early bird registration.

The following topics will be covered:

8:30 am:   Multi-spectral imagery for improved assessment of disease severity on  watermelon and cucurbits – Dr. Mathews Paret, UF/IFAS NFREC

9:00 am:   Viroids: Very small pathogens that can cause really big problems – Dr. Jane Polston, UF/IFAS Plant Pathology Dept.

9:30 am:   Taking a closer look at Fusarium wilt resistance in tomato – Dr. Sam Hutton, UF/IFAS GCREC

9:50 am:    Break

10:10 am:  Movement and management of tomato bacterial spot during seedling production – Dr. Gary Vallad, UF/IFAS GCREC

10:30 am:  Fusarium Threatening Leafy Vegetable Production in Florida – Dr. Richard Raid, UF/IFAS EREC

10:50 am:  Advances in breeding for lettuce BLS – Dr. German Sandoya, UF/IFAS EREC

11:10 am:  Spinach stemphyllium leaf spot. A new threat to the baby leaf industry in Florida – Dr. Will Wadlington, UF/IFAS EREC

11:30 am:  Sources of and Resolving Stress Related Ethylene Effects in Seedlings – Mr. Al Green – AgroFresh

12:00 pm:  Lunch

1:00 pm:    Improving flavor quality in the commercial Florida tomato – Dr. Harry Klee, UF/IFAS Horticulture Department

1:20 am:    Race 3 fusarium in watermelon – Dr. Nick Dufault, UF/IFAS Plant Pathology Dept.

1:40 pm:    Update on the sweet corn breeding program at UF – Dr. Marcio Resende, UF/IFAS Horticulture Dept.

2:00 pm:    Update on the UF/IFAS Small Grains Breeding Program – Dr. Ali Babar, UF/IFAS Agronomy Dept

2:20 pm:    UF Peanut Breeding Program – Dr. Barry Tillman, UF/IFAS NFREC

2:40 pm:    Agricultural Feed, Seed, and Fertilizer Advisory Council Update – FDACS

3:00 pm:    Gene Editing: Will We Participate in the Revolution? – Dr. Kevin Folta, UF/IFAS Horticulture Dept.

3:20 pm:    Why is UF working on industrial hemp? The UF/ IFAS industrial hemp pilot program. – Dr. Rob Gilbert, UF IFAS Agronomy Dept.

For more information or to register for the event, please contact Arlen Wood at Florida Seed Association at 863-660-6540.

The FSA is a member-driven organization which functions to promote and protect the success of the Florida Seed industry and its growers.  The purpose of the FSA is to provide communication, education, and guidance for the seed and allied industries. FSA membership is statewide.

Close up of an Alternaria pathogen. Photo by Mathews Paret



Cold Tolerant Citrus Production Workshop – June 2

Cold Tolerant Citrus Production Workshop – June 2

Please join Extension agents and specialists from the University of Florida and University of Georgia for a highly informative Cold Tolerant Citrus Workshop. The event starts at 8:30 Eastern at the UF/IFAS Extension Taylor County office in Perry, Florida.

The following topics will be covered:

  • Backing up your electric powered freeze protection: Mr. Arley Brillion, Mastery Engine Center, St. Petersburg Florida
  • Automating your irrigation, fertigation and freeze protection with air and soil moisture sensors: Doug Crawford, BMP Logic, Trenton Florida
  • Irrigation design for fertigation and chemigation: Dr. Charles Barrett UF/IFAS Suwannee Valley REC
  • Selling citrus – how do I get paid?  Mr. Adam Roe, W.G. Roe and Sons, Winter Haven Florida
  • Latest innovations in freeze protection: Kim Jones, Bethel Oaks Farm, Monticello Florida and Clay Lamar, 1 Dog Ventures, Georgia
  • Tour of Grams Legacy Grove in Perry, Florida: Andy Jackson

The workshop will include lunch and a tradeshow.  Please click HERE to register for the event.  For more information, contact Clay Olson, UF/IFAS Extension Taylor County at 850-838-3508 or Dan Fenneman, UF/IFAS Extension Madison County at 850-973-4138.