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Protecting Your Plants From The Tobacco Mosaic

Protecting Your Plants From The Tobacco Mosaic

The Tobacco Mosaic virus may be rare, but it can be a great challenge to get rid of it quickly. Chances are, if your plant gets infected once, it will get infected again. For this reason, you need to get rid of it permanently before the virus wreaks havoc in your growing space. However, before we get into how you can get rid of the Tobacco mosaic virus for good, let us first understand what exactly the virus is and how you can spot it in your plant.

Understanding Tobacco Mosaic Virus

This virus may infect a total of 350 different plant species. The name of the virus comes from the first plant the virus attacked – a tobacco plant. It is prevalent throughout the country, and the most common victims include tomatoes, beans, roses, cucumber, and tobacco. What makes this virus specifically detrimental to your growing space is that it is easily transferrable between plants. Since it can infect up to 350 different species, the damage could be colossal.

This rod-shaped virus has many different strains, each strain resulting in slightly varying symptoms in the plant it attacks. The virus can spread in both dry and wet soils, lasting up to two whole years in the dry one. Now let us discuss how your plant can get infected with this virus.

How does your plant get infected with the Tobacco Mosaic Virus?

The virus spreads in several ways. The most common modes include:
• Pests: The virus overwinters on perennial weeds. Insects, such as aphidsleafhoppers, whiteflies, and cucumber beetles feed on those weeds, transmitting the virus to other plants.
• Infected plants: Spores in the soil, seeds, or containers can infect your other plants. Similarly, if you take "clones" from an infected plant, the virus is transmitted to the offspring as well.
• Humans: Even you can spread the virus when you work with contaminated tools on healthy plants.

What are the Symptoms of the Tobacco Mosaic Virus?

The Tobacco Mosaic virus may be tough to detect as the symptoms are similar to nutrient-deficiency in a plant. Nevertheless, a typical case of the virus causes plants to exhibit the following symptoms:
• Stunted growth in the infected plants.
• White, yellow, or green spots on the leaves
• Yellowed veins on the leaves
• Crinkled and shrunken leaves
Overall, these symptoms result in low yields and even wilted fruit.

How to Prevent Tobacco Mosaic Virus in your plants?

All growers, especially the commercial ones, should not risk losing their yield to a virus that can be taken care of easily with the right precautions. As not many treatments have proven successful in saving your plant post-infection, you should rely on preventive measures to protect your plants. Following are a few ways you can avoid the virus:

1. Invest in resistant plant varieties

Not all plants are resistant to the virus. Some plants, such as the tomato-producing ones, have readily available resistant varieties such as 'Big Beef, 'Sungold,' 'Geronimo,' and 'Pink Wonder.' Where you get these varieties from is just as important, too. Make sure you buy from suppliers you can trust.

2. Regularly remove weeds

As the virus overwinters on weeds, removing them from the soil in your growing space can reduce transmission risk. Not only do these weeds steal nutrients meant for your plant, but they are also the breeding ground for dozens of pests. Remove all weeds within 100 yards of the growing space to control the spread of the virus. A clean garden is a virus-free garden!

3. Disinfect all the tools and equipment you work with

Ideally, it would be best if you were disinfecting your equipment at the end of every use. However, even if you are not as careful, you should try to disinfect your tools at least once every month. Your equipment is not the only thing that needs cleaning; make sure that you frequently wash your hands while working with your plants.

4. Avoid working during wet weather

Maintaining good watering habits is essential for your plant's health. Wet weather encourages the spread of the Tobacco Mosaic virus. To prevent this from happening, try watering your plants first thing in the morning so that by the time you are ready to work on them, they have had enough time in the sunlight to dry off completely.

5. Do not smoke near your plants

This point may sound a little silly, but that does not mean it's not true. Many people do not know that tobacco products can also spread the tobacco mosaic virus. Make sure you do not smoke anywhere near your gardening space and that you wash your hands after coming in direct contact with any tobacco products.

6. Remove infected plants from your growing space

Knowing when to get rid of the infected plants might be difficult, but it can save your entire garden from destruction. Be careful to discard the infected plants in the trash and wash your hands right after.

Treating Tobacco Mosaic Virus

There are currently no methods to treat the Tobacco Mosaic virus in your plants. Your best bet is catching the virus in its early stages and discarding the infected plant to protect the garden. Since there are no available treatment options for the Tobacco Mosaic virus, you must carry out the preventive measures mentioned above to the best of your ability.

Not sure where to start? Groindoor.com has got you covered!

At Groindoor.com, we have hundreds of different products for all your planting needs. We have everything you will ever need, from pesticides for controlling those pesky pests in your garden to gardening equipment. Shop now or for more guidance, call us at 866-GRO-INDR. Happy planting!

May 12th 2021