Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Breynia bunch (478)

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  • Narrow distribution. Malaita and Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands.
  • Serious disease of Breynia, a secondary forest species, associated with a phytoplasma identified by electron microscopy. Note, phytoplasma are bacteria that grow only in the phloem of plants; none have so far been cultured in the lab.
  • Shoots proliferate developing massive bunches of little leaves, along the trunk, but mostly along branches. Dieback eventually occurs, and death, as trees become overgrown by other species.
  • Spread: leafhoppers or planthoppers are likely to spread the disease, but none identified so far.
  • Cultural and Chemical control: none recommended. Breynia is not a tree of economic importance.
Common Name

Breynia bunch

Scientific Name

Breynia bunch phytoplasma disease.

AUTHOR Grahame Jackson
Information (and Photo 6) from Dabek AJ, Jackson GVH (1977) Association of mycoplasma-like organisms with Breynia bunch, a newly discovered disease on Malaita, Solomon Islands. Phytopath. Z. 90:132-138. JPM Brenan, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, UK, is acknowledged for the identification, distribution and economic significance of Breynia cernua.

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project HORT/2016/185: Responding to emerging pest and disease threats to horticulture in the Pacific islands, implemented by the University of Queensland and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community.

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