Cynthia St. Charles Store

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Phytoplasma infection in my Echinacea!

 I am pretty bummed all my Echinacea plants are infected with phytoplasma. The flowers are green rather than the usual pink. They have abnormal flower development with extra growths coming from the flowers (see middle picture) and some of the plants are already dyeing. The rest I will just have to pull out, hoping to prevent spread of this disease to other plants. The disease is spread by leaf hoppers and I believe the same phytoplasma caused scorch in my iris and affected my grape vine.  From my research, it looks like this microorganism is similar to a bacteria, but is smaller than a bacteria and is therefore more difficult to detect.  It is passed between plant species by leafhoppers.  There is no known treatment.


tiedyejudy said...

We had a large infestation of leaf hoppers this year too... happens every few years. I'm tempted to try raising guinea hens because I hear they eat the leaf hoppers, but then I would have to protect them from the cats and the elements...sorry to hear about the damage to your flowers!

Susan Sawatzky said...

too bad it is contagious, I like the green flowers!

Susan Sawatzky said...

Too bad it is contagious, I like the green flowers!