A summer without late blight?

If you’re a student of history, you’ve probably heard of late blight. The highly contagious fungus, which caused the disastrous Irish potato famine in the 1840s, can hurt both yields and quality in spuds.

The crop disease has struck potatoes in western Minnesota and eastern North Dakota in each of the past three summers.

Fortunately, late blight hasn’t been reported in the region this summer and the danger of the disease popping up is only moderate,  according to the North Dakota State University Blightline, which tracks the conditions that cause the disease to appear.

Still, area potato farmers should continue to check their crops closely and be ready to spray protectant fungicide, according to the Blightline.

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