Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Banana bunchy top (121)

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  • Restricted distribution. Asia, Africa, Oceania. On bananas and other Musa species. BBT is caused by a virus. It is spread by aphids, and in suckers for planting. Major losses occur in 2-3 years.
  • Dark-green dots and dashes along leaf veins (insert).
  • Cultural control: regular monitoring and removal of plants as soon as BBT seen: (i) kill aphids: spray with kerosene or insecticide; (ii) dig out the matt or kill the plant with herbicide (e.g., glyphosate).
  • Chemical control: to kill aphids on diseased plants only, (i) bananas for home – use soap, white or horticultural oils (or kerosene); (ii) commercial plantations – use synthetic pyrethroids. Note, chemicals will not prevent spread of BBT.
Common Name

Banana bunchy top

Scientific Name

Banana bunchy top nanavirus. There are 2 groups of BBTV isolates from different regions: the South Pacific group (including Australia, Burundi, Egypt, Fiji, India, Tonga, Western Samoa) and the Asian group (including Philippines, Taiwan, Viet Nam). The mean sequence difference between the two groups has been reported as approximately 10 percent. The abbreviation is BBTV.

AUTHOR Grahame Jackson
Information from CABI (2015) Banana bunchy top virus (bunchy top of banana) Crop Protection Compendium. (; and from Banana bunchy top virus (2017) Plant Biosecurity and Product Integrity, Department of Primary Industries. NSW Government, Australia. ( and from Bunchy top, banana - Australia (Queensland, New South Wales) Alert. ProMED. ( Photo 1 Richard Markham. ACIAR, Canberra.

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project PC/2010/090: Strengthening integrated crop management research in the Pacific Islands in support of sustainable intensification of high-value crop production, implemented by the University of Queensland and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community.

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