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Whitefly-Transmitted Cucurbit Leaf Crumple Virus Detected in Georgia (Drs. Tim Coolong and Bhabesh Dutta)

Dr. Babu Srinivasan has recently confirmed cucurbit leaf crumple virus (CuLCrV) from squash foliage at Tifton, GA. The symptoms of CuLCrV include crumpling, curling, yellowing and chlorosis of leaves. Infected plants appear stunted with distorted growth. Disease symptoms can be severe, especially in Cucurbita spp. (e.g., various types of squash), and may result in yield losses.  In variety trials currently being conducted at the UGA Tifton Campus, we are experiencing disease incidence of more than 80% in yellow squash. In contrast, symptoms of CuLCrV in susceptible cantaloupe and watermelon can be initially severe, but then plants may gradually recover from viral symptoms and as a result yield is not generally affected.  The virus is spread by whiteflies in a persistent manner and has been a sporadic problem in Georgia (Fall). This high level of infection is present despite a robust spray program focusing on whiteflies. In areas with high levels of whitefly,  CuLCrV can be expected.  Current varieties grown in Georgia in the fall do not have resistance to this virus.