Chilli Damping-off

  • Symptoms

  • Trigger

  • Biological Control

  • Chemical Control

  • Preventive Measures

Chilli Damping-off

Pythium aphanidermatum


In a Nutshell

  • Plants are infected early in the growing stage.
  • Brownish water-soaked lesions on stems.
  • Poor or no germination.
  • Browning or rotting of seeds.
  • Plant dies.
  • Seedlings may be destroyed.


Capsicum & Chili


Damping-off is mostly a seed-borne disease. Infected seedlings either fail to sprout or if they sprout, they fall over and die soon after emergence. Stems usually have a dark dried portion near the soil line and develop brownish water-soaked lesions. Symptoms may also include browning or rotting of the seed.


Damping-off is mainly an early-season problem, causing greatest losses in plantings in cool, wet soils. Pythium aphanidermatum survives in the soil or on plant residues. Damage is generally limited to areas of compacted soils where drainage is poor. Optimal conditions for the development of the disease are high soil moisture of 90-100 %, high relative humidity and higher soil temperature of about 20°C. It spreads through irrigation water or via infected seedlings.

Biological Control

Bio-fungicides based on the bacteria Bacillus subtilis can be used to control the transmission of the disease.

Chemical Control

Always consider an integrated approach with preventive measures together with biological treatments if available. In fields with histories of damping-off or problems with drainage consider using fungicides preventively. For example, the seeds can be treated either with ceresin or with 1% Bordeaux mixture.

Preventive Measures

Use seeds from healthy plants or from certified sources.,Make sure to plant healthy seedlings.,Avoid excessive moisture by soil drainage.,Avoid too frequent irrigation during the vegetative growth of the crop.,Offer good ventilation and exposure to sunlight for moisture reduction.,Remove and destroy plant residues after harvest.