Every year, Utah scientists discover two to three plant diseases that have not been previously reported in the state. In addition, known diseases in the state move on to new hosts. Among the newly identified diseases: Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum, which infects potatoes, peppers, and tomatoes; potato virus Y strain NTN; and watermelon mosaic virus on pumpkins, squashes, and gourds. Another disease, bacterial spot, was introduced on tomatoes and peppers through contaminated seeds, resulting in yield losses of $4,000 to $6,000 per acre. Early detection of new diseases allows growers to control the diseases before they spread further. Utah State University Extension includes entomologists and plant pathologists who serve the communities by addressing various plant and pest issues. The Utah Plant Pest Diagnostic Lab (UPPDL) serves on the Utah School Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Coalition and provides IPM training to public health employees and public, private, and charter school faculty and staff.
Learn more about Utah plant pest programs.
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