Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: July 1, 1999
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Eriophyid mites are microscopically small worm-like creatures which feed on plant tissues, and often cause galls or distored growth. Several kinds are known to affect currants and gooseberries (Ribes sp.). The gooseberry mite, which was thought to primarily affect gooseberries, was discovered in large numbers on black currants and red currants as well as other ornamental species in the plant collection maintained by USDA-ARS in Corvallis, Oregon. This report itemizes the plants that were affected. Currant and gooseberry growers in North America should be aware of this mite.
Technical Abstract: During December 1997 and January 1998, the gooseberry mite, Cecidophyopsis grossulariae Collinge, was observed to infest 48 currants and gooseberries, Ribes L., in a field plantation in Corvallis, Oregon, USA. The mite was observed on 29 black currants, Ribes nigrum L., 2 red currants, Ribes rubrum L. and R. sativum (Rchbch.) Syme, 12 gooseberries, R. uva-crispa L., ,R. oxyacanthoides var. setosum (Lindley) Sinnot, 3 R. x nidigrolaria Bauer and the hybrid R. nigrum x R. pauciflorum Turcz. ex Pojark. A range of mite infestation levels was observed, with some cultivars being uninfested, some with light infestation, between 1 and 100 mites per bud, and some heavily infested, with more than 100 mites per bud. On lightly infested buds, the mites were inside bud and leaf scales; on heavily infested buds, mites were also observed inside buds on floral primordia. Scales of infested buds were often loose and appeared more open than uninfested ones. Mite distribution varied by branch within a plant. The most heavily infested cultivar was the Russian black currant, Ribes nigrum cv. Tunnaja, which had more than 1000 mites per bud. Floral primordia were damaged in heavily infested buds. Black currant cultivars with the heaviest infestation of C. grossulariae were of Scandinavian, Russian, Scottish and Canadian origin.