Crown Gall

Agrobacterium tumefaciens

Crown Gall

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A very common and widespread disease but largely superficial the damage caused. Crown Gall is more of an issue with ornamental plants as the galls can be unsightly.
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Irregular or sometimes almost spherical galls that can appear on almost any part of the plant. Can be very difficult to distinguish between Crown Gall and other types of gall due to the diversity of their appearance and that they can appear anywhere on the plant. Usually, however, they mainly occur at the junction between the roots and stems. Crown Gall can infect a massive range of woody and herbaceous plants. Galls are hard on woody plants but soft on herbaceous plants and can become an ideal place for rots to invade.


Irregular or spherical galls

Biological treatment

Carefully to avoid wounding, remove the galls from ornamental plants and burn the galls.

Chemical treatment

The application of sulphur to contaminated soil has been known to kill the bacteria but it is rarely cost effective since the disease is minor.


The bacteria is splashed from the soil onto the plants where they enter through tiny wounds where they replicate and cause galls.


Not growing on land that has supported the disease before as the bacteria may still be in the soil. Careful handling of stock to reduce the risk of wounding plants.
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