[NAFEX] New Blueberry Viruses
Lon J. Rombough
lonrom at hevanet.com
Wed Jul 22 17:28:10 EDT 2009
Exotic Viruses Hit Michigan Blueberries
July 21, 2009
According to Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA), two viruses —
blueberry shock and blueberry scorch — were found through routine
surveys conducted by MDA and Michigan State University plant
Both viruses have been known to occur in certain West Coast and
mid-Atlantic states, causing significant losses. This is the first time
they have been discovered in Michigan. According to a news release from
MDA, there are no known cures for either disease.
Blueberry shock causes infected plants to suffer from loss of foliage
and blossoms, resulting in yield loss the first year of infection. It
is possible for fruit production to resume the next year, but experts
believe the disease could be more severe in the northern climate.
Infected plants serve as sources of infection to nearby plants, as
well, since blueberry shock is transmitted primarily through
Blueberry scorch symptoms are similar to shock. In the spring, shoot
tips die back, sometimes on only a few branches. The flowers may blight
just as the earliest blossoms open. Infected plants repeat the symptom
cycle each spring. The whole bush will become infected within three
years, and fruit production and shoot growth are seriously reduced. The
virus is transmitted by aphids.
MDA is working with MSU blueberry experts to develop a response plan.
The initial action will include eradication of the infected plants and
monitoring of nearby blueberry plantings to assure the disease has been
eliminated. A meeting with blueberry growers is planned for September
to review findings from the surveys, and to discuss means of
safeguarding the industry.
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Size: 2073 bytes
Desc: not available
Url : http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/private/nafex/attachments/20090722/3ed255ca/attachment.bin
More information about the nafex