Cercospora Leaf Spot (Frogeye)

Causal Agents:
Cercospora capsici, C. melongenae)


This disease affects the leaves, petioles, stems and peduncles of pepper and eggplant. Symptoms first appear as small, circular to oblong chlorotic lesions. Lesions later turn necrotic with a sporulating light-gray center and a dark-brown margin. Concentric rings may be observed as individual lesions expand. These lesions often resemble frog eyes giving this disease its common name. As the lesions dry, the centers crack and drop out. When the disease is severe, defoliation and reduction in fruit size occur.

Conditions for Disease Development
These fungi can survive for at least one year in infected plant debris. Wet, warm weather conditions favor disease development. Spores are spread by wind, rain and irrigation water or mechanically by equipment and people.

A calendar-based protectant fungicide spray program combined with cultural practices can reduce losses from Cercospora leaf spot. Turn under or remove all plant debris and rotate to non-host crops to lower field inoculum levels. Mulch and furrow or drip irrigate to reduce spread of the pathogen from splashing water.

Centers of lesions dry and crack on pepper.

Necrotic lesions on eggplant.

Sporulating center with chlorotic halo on pepper.