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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Wapato, Washington » Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #348149

Research Project: Systems Approach for Managing Emerging Insect Pests and Insect-Transmitted Pathogens of Potatoes

Location: Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research

Title: Potato psyllid and the South American desert plant Nolana: an unlikely psyllid host?

Author
item Horton, David
item Miliczky, Eugene - Washington State University
item Thinakaran, Jenita - University Of Idaho
item Cooper, William - Rodney
item Munyaneza, Joseph - Us Department Of Agriculture (USDA)
item Wohleb, Carrie - Washington State University
item Karasev, Alexander - University Of Idaho

Submitted to: Potato Progress
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/20/2017
Publication Date: 11/20/2017
Citation: Horton, D.R., Miliczky, E., Thinakaran, J., Cooper, W.R., Munyaneza, J., Wohleb, C., Karasev, A. 2017. Potato psyllid and the South American desert plant Nolana: an unlikely psyllid host?. Potato Progress. 17:16.

Interpretive Summary: Zebra chip, an economically important disease of potato in the United States, is transmitted to potato by the potato psyllid. Researchers at USDA-ARS Wapato in Washington, in collaboration with scientists from Washington State University and University of Idaho, have determined that Chilean bellflower, an ornamental plant related to potato, supports growth and development of both potato psyllid and the bacterium that causes zebra chip disease in potatoes. It was discovered that survival and development rates of potato psyllid on Chilean bellflower approach rates exhibited on optimal hosts such as potato. Symptoms in infected plants caused by the zebra chip pathogen are described. This information should be used as a caution for growers to be aware that potato-related ornamental plants not previously known to support development of psyllids and the zebra chip pathogen have the potential to be reservoirs of infective psyllids in potato growing regions.

Technical Abstract: Managing zebra chip disease in the potato growing regions of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho is complicated by confusion about the role of non-crop plant species in zebra chip epidemiology. Weedy and ornamental Solanaceae have been shown to be reservoirs of both the potato psyllid (vector of the disease pathogen) and the bacterium. We summarize results of assays with an ornamental plant (Chilean bellflower) being sold in the US for flower gardens and as patio container plants. The plant was found to be highly suitable to development of the psyllid and the bacterium. We use these data as a cautionary tale for potato growers to be aware that ornamental plants related to potato but not previously known to be developmental hosts of potato psyllid have the potential to be reservoirs of both the psyllid and the zebra chip pathogen in potato growing regions of the U.S.