Worldwide distribution. On many kinds of fruit and vegetable seedlings in the nursery, with beans, cabbage, carrot, lettuce, onion, and tomato especially susceptible. Important diseases.
Mostly caused by soil fungi and water moulds, oomycetes. Damping-off is of two kinds: (i) death before emergence; and (ii) death after emergence.
Spread in water splash, on tools, and in potting mixes.
Cultural control: nursery hygiene: pasteurise soil or soilless mixes, monitor; if outbreaks in seed beds, move to different sites; do not use pond or stream water; do not over-water; ensure boxes have good drainage; avoid soil splash: raise seed boxes above ground (>1 m) to avoid rain splash.
Chemical control: seed – captan, thiram, or mancozeb. Treat seed boxes with 1% bleach for 5 min, then rinse.