Tobacco Mosaic Virus

Definition - What does Tobacco Mosaic Virus mean?

Tobacco Mosaic Virus is a botanical infection that affects various types of plants, including those belonging to the Solanaceae family, and tobacco plants.

Tobacco Mosaic Virus manifests itself as plant discoloration, especially on the leaves, and mottling that can sometimes look like a mosaic pattern.

Tobacco Mosaic Virus was officially classified as a virus in 1930, but it was discovered in the late 19th century.

MaximumYield explains Tobacco Mosaic Virus

In tomato plants, the Tobacco Mosaic Virus has been known to stunt growth while causing yellowing of the leaves and sometimes fruits. In most cases, the virus results in reduced yields. Additionally, the virus can cause uneven ripening in fruits.

While this virus commonly affects tomatoes, it can also destroy cherry, pear, apple, potato, and pepper crops. According to botanists, Tobacco Mosaic Virus can additionally affect weeds such as lamb’s quarters and pigweed. The virus can also affect horsenettle, jimson weed, petunia, lettude, cucumbers, beets, and various types of ornamental plants.

Some of the other symptoms of Tobacco Mosaic Virus include internal browning under the skin, especially in fruits, as well as yellowish rings on the surface. Leaves can be reduced in size, or become curled or even malformed. This virus thrives in warmer temperatures.

Cultural control is important to avoid Tobacco Mosaic Virus. Growers are encouraged to only purchase transplants from reputable and registered sources. Because there are no chemical controls that work against this virus, precautions must be taken to curb the symptoms or avoid it altogether.

One way Tobacco Mosaic Virus can be transferred to indoor grow rooms is by cigarettes. If a grower is smoking or otherwise handling contaminated tobacco products on a regular basis, and then entering their grow rooms without properly sterilizing their hands and clothing, the virus can spread to their indoor plants. Occurrences of this happening are rare, but it does happen.

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