Limiting Tomato Bacterial Canker Spread

Taylor Hillman Pest Update, Specialty Crops, Vegetables

Tomato bacterial canker isn’t a huge problem for growers but it can be with an increase of wet springs. Experts say limiting the spread of the bacteria is the main concern.

Limiting Tomato Bacterial Canker Spread

When a grower finds tomato bacterial canker in the field, there are a few things to consider. That, according to UC Vegetable Crops Advisor, Gene Miyao. “I think you want to take precautions. If you have canker in your field and it’s confirmed, you want to be careful about spreading it. That would be the main concern,” Miyao says. “We are in a time of year, into the summer, where the likelihood of it being extremely severe in terms of spread in the current season is not as great of a risk as if it were in the spring and rainy.”

And how do you prevent spread? Miyao says the biggest problem that has immediate effects is during wet times, but there are also longer-term problems during harvest. “If your in a severely infested field, including some disinfectant spray down after scraping off plant debris and soil during cleanup of that harvester is wise so you aren’t taking it into a non-infested field. It’s not going to be a problem in the current harvest period but there’s potential of having that remain in the field for 2017.”

Miyao says the problem isn’t too widespread at the moment, but growers should keep an eye out for symptoms of bacterial canker.