Beet, Red (Beta vulgaris)-Beet Mosaic

Cause Beet mosaic virus (BMV) overwinters in infected members of the beet family (including sugar beets). The virus is spread by many aphid species but persists in the aphid vectors for only a few hours. Therefore, the virus moves fairly short distances from infected plants. The host range for BMV includes the families Chenopodiaceae, Solanaceae, Leguminosae, and others.

Symptoms Young leaves have yellowish circular spots, often yellowish rings with green centers. Leaves appear puckered and mottled with light and dark green areas. Plants are stunted.

Cultural control

  • Eliminate overwintering hosts (both escaped and wild).
  • Plant to avoid migrating aphids.

Reference Harveson, R.M., Hanson, L.E., and Hein, G.L. 2009. Compendium of Beet Diseases and Pests, 2nd Ed. St. Paul, MN: APS Press.