Plum Pox Virus

Potyvirus spp.

Plum Pox Virus, Plum Pox, PPV, Sharka, Sharka Disease of Plum, Peach Sharka

Photo by Andrew Conboy (CC BY 4.0)
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A close up picture of a plant with Pokeweed mosaic virus potyvirus
Potyvirus is a group of related viruses that attack a variety of stoned fruits, such as Peaches, Apricots, Plums, Almonds and other ornamental Prunus. Aphids insects are the leading cause of transmission, and this is most problematic in orchards when many trees are planted close together. There is no danger to those who consume fruits with the virus, although, can cause economic impacts where fruits turn deformed or become too acidic. There are currently no treatments for Plum Pox Virus.
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Identification

Circular, discoloured spots which eventually cover the leaves. Yellow spots appear on unripened fruits. Premature fruit fall. Severe attacks cause spots to arise on seed. In Peach, colour breaking may be evident in blossoms.

Symptoms

Discoloured spots on leaves.
Yellow circular spots on fruits which are most notable on unripened fruit.
Fruits fall early.
Fruits are highly acidic.
Colour breaking in some blossoms.

Biological treatment

All diseased materials should be destroyed by burning or disposed of by the local council.

Prevention

Always purchase from trust retailers. Never use seed with discolouration or yellow markings. Destroy any debris surrounding infested plants.
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