Cucumber mosaic virus

July 8, 2015



Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV).

Hosts include

Aconitum, Aster, Astilbe, Campanula, Coreopsis, Delphinium, Echinacea, Gypsophila, Helianthus, Heuchera, Hosta, Ligularia, Lilium, Lysimachia, Oenothera, Penstemon, Phlox, Primula, Scabiosa, Sedum and Viola. Many annuals and vegetables are also susceptible.


Symptoms vary widely, depending on the host plant; possibilities include distorted foliage, mosaic, mottling, stunting and necrosis. Symptoms can resemble herbicide injury.

Cucumber mosaic virus
Mottling on lily


This virus is spread by several aphid vectors. Aphids acquire and transmit virus particles by probing or feeding on plant tissues. An aphid can transmit the virus to susceptible plants for up to 2 hours after acquiring the virus from an infected plant.

Cucumber mosaic virusManagement

Infected plants cannot be treated and should be removed and destroyed. Suspect plants should be tested for CMV by a diagnostic lab or on site using specialized tests available through several plant diagnostic companies.

Weeds can also be infected with CMV, although they usually have no symptoms. Infected weeds in production areas are a source from which the virus can spread. Good weed control, especially of perennial weeds, is important. Aphid populations should be controlled to limit potential insect vectors.

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