Black Mold


Black mold, a fungus otherwise known as Aspergillus Niger, is a black, dusty fungal growth most likely seen on onions and garlic. Not to be confused with 'black rot', this fungus affects mostly stored vegetables and fruits.

black mold,aspergillus Here is a picture of of the fungal infection which you have probably seen before; that dark, dusty powder in between onion scales and garlic cloves.

Left unchecked, this fungal infection will consume the entire fruit it affects, turning it black and making it susceptible to any of a large variety of secondary infections.

It is completely preventable and usually occurs in vegetables that have been stored improperly in high temperature, damp conditions. And it very rarely occurs in the field.

It infects vegetables through wounds and dispersed through spores from infected plants. Once a plant is infected fungicides are somewhat effective but there is no specific chemical that will control black mold so prevention is the best way to attack it.

For home hydroponics systems, this fungus is easily prevented through the use of seeds treated with fungicide and making sure to harvest in dry conditions.

As a side note, the black mold fungus, Aspergillus Niger is commonly used in many commercial preparations. It is an ingredient in the production of citric acid and high fructose corn syrup. And it has been used historically in the preparation of Chandoo opium.

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