Pierce’s disease still plagues California wine country

When glassy-winged sharpshooters (one shown) acquire a healthy grapevine, they can transmit the bacterium that creates Pierce’s disease. The infection avoids the plant from obtaining water and nutrients, and it eventually dies.

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The germs spreads amongst grapevines through insects, particularly sharpshooter leafhoppers and spittlebugs. When the bugs suck sap from an infected plant, they pick up the germ, which harmlessly multiplies in their mouths. When they latch onto a healthy and balanced plant, leafhoppers and spittlebugs after that transfer the virus to vines. The succeeding infection protects against water and nutrients from streaming into the plant, ultimately killing it.

Leafhoppers and spittlebugs then send the microorganism to creeping plants when they lock onto a healthy and balanced plant. The succeeding infection stops water and nutrients from moving into the plant, at some point killing it.

They were able to separate a tiny, non-motile, rod-shaped microorganism which is possibly a new varieties and therefore as yet unnamed.


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