Bacterial Soft Rot of Pepper


Bacterial Soft Rot of Pepper

Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum


In a Nutshell

    Dark vein tissue of the leavesLeaves become chlorotic and later necroticWater-soaked lesions on fruits and stemsDiscoloration of the fruit peduncle is possibleThere might be a foul odor

Hosts: %1$s

· Pepper


Initial symptoms often become visible as dark vein tissue and necrotic areas on leaves. Sunken, water-soaked lesions appear and expand rapidly on stems, fruits, and fruit peduncles. As the disease progresses, dry, dark brown or black stem cankers might develop, often resulting in the breakage of branches. Finally, the entire fruit has become a watery, soft, slimy mass. It hangs from the plant like a water-filled bag. In general, bacterial ooze can be seen in diseased tissues and a foul odor can be present. The affected plants wilt and die later.


The soil-borne bacteria that cause soft rot are ubiquitous in the environment. They are associated with surface water and the soil. Warm and moist weather is highly favorable for infection. The bacteria enter the plant through wounds produced during the handling of the cultures, insect stings and sunscald. Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum have a lot of host plants, for example potato, sweet potato, cassava, onion, cabbage, carrot, tomato, bean, corn, cotton, coffee and banana.

Biological Control

Sorry, we don't know of any alternative treatment against Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum. Please get in touch with us in case you know of something that might help to fight this disease. Looking forward to hearing from you.

Chemical Control

Always consider an integrated approach with preventive measures together with biological treatments if available. A chemical treatment of the seeds and harvested fruits with a sodium hypochlorite solution can be useful to prevent further contamination. For example, seeds could be bathed in a 1% sodium hypochlorite solution (bleach) for 30 seconds and rinsed afterwards with clean water.

Preventive Measures

    Implement crop rotation with maize, bean or soybeanAvoid planting pepper after potato or cabbagePlow deep to reduce inoculum in soilEnsure careful handling during cultivation, weeding and harvestingAvoid working during wet conditionsProvide good drainageAvoid excess of nitrogen fertilization and irrigationEnsure good field hygiene (water, clothes, tools)Use disinfection products (hands, tools)Remove affected plants and harvest residues and destroy them by burning


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