Coffee Vascular Wilt Disease
- Other names: Tracheomycosis
Caused by: The fungi Fusarium xylariorides and Gibberella xylariorides
Occurrence: In Eastern, Central and West Africa. First recorded in 1948.
Economic losses: In most cases, attack of the disease indicates imminent death to the infected plant. Uganda incurs a loss of about US$3.5 million per annum due to this disease. In Ethiopia, entire plantations have been permanently destroyed by this disease.
Part(s) of the plant it affects: The entire plant, the xylem
Symptoms: At the onset of the disease, the leaves become flaccid, then the plant dries out (desiccation). Subsequently, the plant sheds its leaves, fruits, and flowers (abscission). Branches may turn black and the tree dies.
Treatment and management: Vascular wilt disease of all plants are difficult to treat or manage. Currently, the two strategies commonly employed are: to avoid planting at sites where the disease has occurred in the last 6 - 7 years and to use resistant cultivars.
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