White blister diseases attack plants in the Asteraceae (daisy) family and ornamental and edible Brassicaceae plants, such as brassicas and aubrieta and honesty. It initially produces pale spots and blotches that develop into white blisters. These contain and then release huge numbers of powdery spores.
When the infection takes hold, it results in distorted growth, reduced plant vigour and stunted growth and badly affected plant parts can shrivel up and die. Examples of distorted growth include sunken pits and/or bulges, curved and buckled stems and abnormal seedpods.
White blister is caused by several different fungus-like organisms, which are closely related to downy mildews. On some plants, downy mildew and white blister can be present at the same time.
The infection and spread of white blister is worse in wet weather – the same conditions that encourage downy mildews.
Because of the white pustules, white blister diseases are sometimes referred to as white rusts, but they are unrelated to true rust diseases.