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Eradication, Containment, and/or Management of Plum Pox Disease (Sharka)


<OL> <LI> Determine the distribution and incidence of plum pox virus throughout the Northeast region, and nationally (including Canada). <LI>Fill gaps in knowledge about PPV survival and spread through basic and applied research. <LI>Develop PPV management strategies. <LI>Develop traditional and innovative delivery systems for information transfer to stone fruit researchers and extension personnel, fruit growers, and fruit industry representatives on current knowledge of plum pox virus.

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NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: Peach trees in South Carolina will be sampled and tested for the presence of plum pox virus.


APPROACH: Surveys of peach orchards and individual peach trees for the presence of plum pox virus will be completed as directed by APHIS using ELISA and sampling techniques recommended by USDA/APHIS. Trees identified by growers as potential candidates for propagation will be given a unique number and tested for plum pox virus by ELISA. Results of the testing includng maps showing the locations of each tree will be supplied to the grower and the nursery prior to budwood being cut. The program of budwood testing will expand to cover approximately 2,000 trees in South Carolina and an equal number of trees in Georgia.
PROGRESS: 2001/10 TO 2006/09<BR>
In South Carolina (SC), during the period October 2001 - September 2006, over 20,000 samples of peach and plum were collected and tested for the presence of plum pox virus (PPV). This number was comprised of samples that were part of the National Survey for plum pox virus and also samples collected from common stock blocks that are part of the southeastern budwood program operated between growers and nurseries in Tennessee (TN). An additional 4,250 samples originating from nursery stock growing in TN but budded with scionwood collected in SC were also tested. The majority of tests were completed using ELISA . However, in 2003 and 2004 testing of fruit samples collected from orchards located at Monetta, SC and identified as the source of suspicious fruit obtained by USDA Fort Detrick was completed using immunocapture PCR. Plum pox virus was not detected in any of these samples.
IMPACT: 2001/10 TO 2006/09<BR>
The extensive testing completed between 2001 -2006 has served to provide a degree of reassurance to growers that plum pox virus is not present in the state of South Carolina. The continued annual testing of budwood sources of varieties that are currently of commercial importance provides growers with a source of virus tested material from which nurseries can propagate. This provides a supply of the highest quality planting material for the industry in SC, the southeastern US, and other parts of the US to which trees propagated in Tennessee are supplied. Testing for plum pox virus continues to make growers aware of the problems associated with the presence of viruses in stone fruits and stimulates them to plant virus-tested material where ever possible, thus sustaining a significant agricultural industry in the state.

Scott, Simon
Clemson University
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