Home Home & Garden What Are Signs and Controls of Tomato Mosaic Virus?

What Are Signs and Controls of Tomato Mosaic Virus?


Tomato Mosaic Virus (ToMV) is a quick spreading plant virus that has been round for millennia however was solely remoted and recognized after the identification of the Tobacco Mosaic Virus (TMV) within the late 1800s.

It shortly devastates all kinds of crops, most particularly tomatoes. On this article, we describe ToMV signs and supply sound recommendation for stopping and treating this plant illness. Learn on to study extra.

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How Problematic Is Tomato Mosaic Virus?

This sort of mosaic virus could be very contagious and really critical. To make issues worse, figuring out it may be fairly troublesome. An contaminated tomato plant might exhibit all kinds of indicators and signs relying upon components similar to:

  • Environmental Circumstances
  • The Sort of Plant
  • The Virus Pressure
  • The Crops’ Age

Moreover, ToMV and TMV are very comparable, so it may be arduous to tell apart one from the opposite.

What Are Signs of Tomato Mosaic Virus? 

ToMV might assault crops at any development stage, and the viral illness can grow to be established on any a part of the plant. All elements of an contaminated plant might present indicators of the an infection.

It’s possible you’ll discover a mosaic or mottled look on the crops’ leaves. 

One other foliage symptom is leaf stunting.

Crops with very extreme infections might start to tackle a fern-like look with some areas of the leaves changing into deep inexperienced and raised. 

Crops which have been contaminated with this virus might have decreased fruit set, and the fruit that they do produce might have yellow or useless spots on the outside and spoiled, brown inside. 

What’s the Distinction Between ToMV and TMV?

The signs of mosaic viruses are similar to these brought on by a number of different sorts of plant illness. Moreover, issues similar to lack of minerals within the soil, extreme air pollution and herbicide use may cause signs just like these brought on by mosaic viruses.

ToMV and TMV have an effect on many vegetable backyard and decorative crops and all kinds of weeds. Examples embrace:

Though TMV and ToMV look fairly a bit alike and are fairly carefully associated, they’re genetically totally different. One solution to inform them aside is to easily establish the host, however even then, there’s complicated overlap. 

Mosaic viruses, basically, are likely to infect frequent vegetable backyard crops, similar to squash, beans, potatoes and peppers. Moreover, roses and tobacco crops are topic to an infection by all types of mosaic viruses.

To make issues much more complicated, ToMV negatively impacts backyard crops and orchard timber, in addition to a lot of totally different weeds, similar to lambs quarters and pigweed. Fruit timber (e.g. cherry, pear and apple) are topic to an infection by ToMV. ToMV may cause fruit to ripen erratically.

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How Can You Inform Your Tomatoes Have ToMV?

ToMV causes tomato crops to be stunted with yellowed leaves and decreased fruit manufacturing. Nevertheless, tomato crops could also be contaminated by TMV, and present the identical illness signs. This variant can even assault cucumber crops and lettuces, along with tobacco. 

Affected crops might exhibit:

  • “Brownwall” through which the inside of the fruit turns brown simply beneath the pores and skin
  • Spots of necrotic leaf tissue, particularly in heat climate
  • Leaves which are mottled deep inexperienced and pale inexperienced
  • Small numbers of stunted tomato fruit that ripen erratically
  • Yellow rings on fruit in heat climate
  • Stunted, malformed or curled leaves
  • Generalized stunting and yellowing

Signs of ToMV will not be as evident when temperatures are cool, however when climate warms up you may even see a sudden improve within the signs.

If you’re uncertain what kind of mosaic illness or different illness your tomato crops could also be exhibiting, test in along with your native agricultural extension. They could ask you to submit a pattern of the foliage for testing.

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Florida Division of Plant Business, Florida Division of Agriculture and Shopper Companies, Bugwood.org
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How Is ToMV Unfold?

As with all viruses, as soon as ToMV is unfold from one plant to a different and enters the plant’s system, it replicates and takes over. It’s troublesome to regulate ToMV as a result of it spreads in a number of methods. 


ToMV can stay dormant by means of the winter on weeds surrounding the backyard plot. The virus can linger in plant particles and within the soil for so long as two years. For that reason, top-of-the-line methods to maintain this decided virus underneath management is to maintain weeds cleared and to put off plant particles promptly.

Pest Bugs

Through the rising season, pest bugs similar to:

… unfold the virus from plant to plant. 

Human Exercise

The benefit with which this virus could be unfold from plant to plant by easy touching and dealing with can’t be pressured sufficient. While you deal with contaminated crops and even brush in opposition to them, you possibly can decide up the virus and carry it to a different plant.

For that reason, you need to be very cautious about washing your arms with cleaning soap and scorching water and disinfecting your instruments between crops. It’s vital to notice that chemical substances have a restricted impact on the virus. It’s greatest to boil your instruments for a stable 5 minutes for full decontamination.

Use of Tobacco Plant Merchandise

In the event you use tobacco merchandise and the tobacco with which your cigarette or different product was made is affected by ToMV or TMV you possibly can unfold the virus by means of smoke or by means of bodily contact. For that reason, it is best to at all times wash your arms after utilizing tobacco merchandise and earlier than working in your backyard.

Why Are Your Tomato Leaves Turning Yellow?

graphic showing tomato plant with ToMV - Tomato Mosaic VirusPin

Is It Potential To Treatment ToMV?

As with most viruses, there’s actually no remedy for ToMV. It should merely be contained and managed because it runs its course.


The underside line is that every one mosaic viruses are incurable and produce very comparable signs in crops. All ought to be addressed in the identical method. 

Comply with these tricks to stop and management mosaic viruses: 

  • When selecting crops, search for these which are proof against mosaic viruses. All the time buy seeds which have been licensed as disease-free.
  • Along with eradicating weeds and plant particles round your backyard, take care to regulate insect pests.
  • Destroy affected crops. In the event you consider that a few of your crops might have been affected by ToMV or any mosaic virus, dig them up and burn them.
  • Change affected soil. You need to take away not solely the affected crops, however the soil through which they had been planted. Take care to not plant crops similar to cucumbers or tomatoes or different prone crops in that space for no less than two years.

Questions and Answers On Tomato Care

How Can You Management ToMV?

Comply with these tricks to hold ToMV underneath management:

  • Select disease-resistant varieties. To find out whether or not the number of tomatoes you might have chosen is proof against ToMV and/or TMV, search for these initials on the finish of the plant identify on the seed packet or seedlings that you simply buy. [source]
  • Use solely seed that has been licensed disease-free or use one among these two strategies to deal with the seed that you simply buy:
    • Soak your tomato seeds in trisodium phosphate (Na3PO4) at a ten% answer for no less than fifteen minutes.
    • Warmth dry tomato seeds to a temperature of 150°F and hold them at that temperature for a number of (3 – 4) days.
  • Solely buy crops from respected nurseries. Inquire as to the institution’s sanitation procedures.
  • Make sure to examine any plant you intend to purchase completely earlier than buying. If it exhibits any signs of illness, give it a move.
  • All the time take away all elements of your crops on the finish of the season. Don’t go away roots within the floor, particularly tomato roots, as that is simply inviting hassle.
  • Hold your backyard soil watered and mulched. Though ToMV can survive in dry plant particles and dry soil for a few years, moist situations within the soil can cut back this period of time to as little as one month.
  • Don’t enable tobacco use in or round your backyard. This consists of cigarettes, chewing tobacco, snuff, cigars, and some other tobacco containing product.
  • Look at your crops continuously and take fast, decisive steps to take away them and sanitize the second you discover any indicators of mosaic virus.
  • Bear in mind to maintain your arms and your instruments scrupulously clear. If it isn’t potential to boil your instruments, you should utilize an answer of germicidal bleach diluted to 1 half bleach and 9 elements water. Soak for no less than one minute. Alternately, you can also make an answer of two elements nonfat dry milk powder and eight elements water to make use of as a soak. [source]
  • Disinfect every part! Bear in mind to disinfect all backyard gear, similar to:
  • Disinfect as you’re employed. If you find yourself pruning, use two units of shears. Prune one plant with one set whereas the opposite set is soaking in a disinfecting answer. Bear in mind to change out between crops.
  • Hold doubtlessly contaminated instruments separate. In the event you do uncover illness in your backyard, designate a selected set of instruments to make use of in that space. [source]