Mosaic virus on bush beans...

shankins123(7aOKC)July 10, 2010

My Italian bush beans have been wonderful this year! Wonderful, up to a couple of weeks ago when I started noticing a little speckling...went out of town and came back to find that every plant was completely covered :( This, just as a huge flush of blooms and tiny beans had set. So...I had to pull all of them. Sad day!

I have two questions...because these were infected, should I worry about my pole beans (located about 3ft. away)?? They seem to have a little speckling and I'm paranoid.

Secondly, if I were to plant another section of bush beans about 2 ft the other direction, would they be especially vulnerable? I'm not sure about this virus, whether it's soilborne or what its means of conveyance is...

Thank you!


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Okiedawn OK Zone 7


Are you sure is it bean mosaic virus and not something else like bean rust or powdery mildew? All you mentioned is speckling, and speckling alone could just be bean rust.

If it is bean mosaic virus, you should see more than should be seeing severe mottling of the foliage, some cupping of the leaves and also stunted growth and somewhat distorted foliage and bean pods.

If it is one of the bean mosaic viruses, yes you should be paranoid and, yes, it will spread. Some forms of bean mosaic virus are worse than others, but in general they all are spread by insects, and most commonly by certain kinds of aphids like bean aphids, pea aphids and green peach aphids. So, as long as you have aphids around, they'll move from plant to plant and spread it. Thus, you have to do something about the aphids to stop them from spreading it to your pole beans or to new plantings.

I think I'd try to address the aphid problem (release lady bugs or use the insecticide of your choice) first and then put in a new planting in the spot a couple of feet away.

If it is rust, I'd just remove the infected plants and foliage and try to save the rest by treating them with sulphur.

With all this moisture, I'm afraid we're about to see huge disease outbreaks.


    Bookmark   July 10, 2010 at 1:34PM
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shankins123(7aOKC) I'm confused. When I look up "green bean rust", I find this picture (which does NOT look like my leaves):

I also found this picture (also labeled as "rust"): It looks more like what mine were doing (the yellowing of veins and eventual yellowing of the whole plant with beans that had set not progressing beyond an inch or two...):

Thanks for bearing with me here; I just want to figure out what I have so I can treat it...or not :*(


    Bookmark   July 10, 2010 at 4:56PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7


While taking a break from picking peppers and maters and wondering why in the heck the humidity is so dang bad, I tried to look at the images in your post. I couldn't see the first a 'this image is not available' message. I could see the second one and if your beans look like that, they probably have rust. Rust is an odd disease because its appearance changes quite a bit at different stages. At some stages it looks really rusty but at others it doesn't. And (OF COURSE) it is more complicated than that. There are over 250 varieties, which I suppose the scientists probably refer to as races, of bean rust worldwide, although I don't know how many of those are found in the USA. So, yours might not look exactly like any photo you find on the web. The real clue, though, is that at a certain point in the fungal cyle, you definitely see rust-colored spots.

I have linked one of the best rust info sources I know of offhand without digging and searching, so please look at it and see if what they show or describe sounds like what you're seeing. I'm going back out to the garden to pick more maters and peppers and I'll check in later to see if you've had time to read this and respond. Now I'm paranoid and will have to check my bean plants for rust.....

I especially like this linked info because it shows images of both early stages and later stages of a bean rust infection. Note the name of the pathogen.....from now on you and I could just call it bean appendicitis.


Here is a link that might be useful: Bean Rust

    Bookmark   July 10, 2010 at 5:44PM
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Honestly, my plants never had the rusty look...they looked more like frame 152 of the BYMV pics. The beans themselves had no rusting either - they just did not grow past the point where the disease had taken over. The individual veined areas of the leaves stayed green while the insides turned yellow. The leaves fell off; the plant died.

I don't think I'll be planting more beans unless I can come up with another location AND now I'm worried about my Tarahumara pole beans from George! If I see that they're going the same direction, I'll take a pic and post it.

Thanks for your help,


    Bookmark   July 10, 2010 at 6:00PM
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Ok...I may change my mind; upon close inspection, I do see the rusty look on the pole beans - I may have missed that stage (clearly) while I was out of town. So...sulphur is on its way, I guess. The beans are growing on a bamboo tepee right along with my cucumbers...should I dust them as well or try not to dust them?

Thank you, all-knowing-and-wise Dawn :)


    Bookmark   July 10, 2010 at 10:50PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7


lol I don't think I'm all-knowing and all-wise....just a good guesser. Plant disease ID can be exceptionally hard because the plant diseases look different at various stages, and often you can have two or more diseases going on at the same time which makes it impossibly hard.

I'd dust sulphur on every bean plant in the garden and hope for the best.

If you're growing anything in the cucurbit family, don't let sulphur get on them. I think it kills them.

Bean rust is just a good guess, and with so many different races of the disease, you may NEVER see a photo online that looks just like what you're seeing.

For what it is worth, I had bean rust pop up on a couple of bush beans sometime in....I think it was early June. It was right after Seedmama posted she was having bean rust on her plants. I pulled the two or three affected leaves off those plants, and it didn't spread to anything else. I think I was lucky and caught it early.

I was in my garden yesterday and saw bean rust on a couple of bush beans in a different bed. These are Tanya's Pink Pod and they have pink flowers and pink pods and are beautiful, although now a little rusty. I pulled off the affected leaves and hope that will be the end of it. If not, I have a bag of sulphur in the garage.

I sure hope the rust doesn't spread to your pole beans. George has never mentioned having disease issues with Tarahumara, and he has ultra-high humidity pretty much every year, so maybe they are pretty disease-resistant.

I don't know if this is a proven scientific fact or anything, but I never see nearly the disease or pest problems on pole beans that I see on bush beans. I suspect that the bush beans, being less vigorous in growth, may be more susceptible to problems whereas the usually vigorously growing pole beans just outgrow whatever is plaguing them.


    Bookmark   July 11, 2010 at 12:43PM
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