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Re: Pseudococcus

Dear Peter:

	I once worked on Xanthomonas, a bacterial blight of cotton, same  
disease, different genus as your infection.   Bacterial blights are  
soil bacteria that cause problems only when they get carried through  
stomtes into the spaces between leaf cells by splashing water. Once  
inside the leaf, they make a sticky mucilage that keeps the bacterial  
cells hydrated.  The mucilage also makes the leaves look dark from  
above, and when viewed against a bright light, the colonies inside the  
leaf show bright.  Sometimes, especially in cool and damp weather,  the  
mucilage will flow out of the leaves and make the surface slimy.  The  
leaf may turn yellow green and then brown at the sites of infection.   
It looks really nasty.    I have seen bacterial blight on various  
ferns, always at this time of year in northern hemisphere when  
conditions in greenhouses are cool, damp and the plants are not growing  
much.  In the cotton fields, the problem gets out of hand in long  
periods of very hot, humid weather with little wind.

	Remove of as much infected tissue/fronds as possible from the  
greenhouse.  While you handle this material, do not touch other plants.  
  Avoid wetting any foliage with water near infected plants, as this  
will spread the infection.  Also, wash your tools and hands, before  
returning to the greenhouse.   Let the plants dry out a bit, warm up  
the house if that is and option, and increase air circulation somewhat,  
if you can.   If things are really out of hand, after removing all  
infected tissue possible, you can spray with an antibiotic, such as  
penicillin, to bring down the amount of bacteria on the surface.   
Unless the growing points are destroyed by the infection, you should  
not loose any plants, though infected tissues will die eventually.

	If your dunking and scrubbing has increased the problem, don't panic.   
Warm things up, let the wind blow through, don't touch healthy fronds  
after infected ones, and remove actively infected tissues.  You can  
also fertilize lightly to help the infected plants begin recovering.     
If problems persist, as a last resort, think about spraying with an  
antibiotic.  And take heart!!  This is a bacteria which came from the  
soil, and is only an opportunistic pathogen, not a frequent problem.

Good luck
Betty in South Bend IN
where we are under a winter storm warning, and expect as much as a foot  
of snow and ice in the next 24 hours.!!!  Burr!!!

On Jan 4, 2005, at 5:13 PM, Baumfarn Webmaster wrote:

> Got a serious drawback today.
> Some plants are infected with Pseudococcus ... Evil or Very Mad
> They are
> Dicksonia Squarrosa (above 1 m)
> Nephrolepis
> Asplenium bulbiferum
> Cafe Arabica
> A silly book, recommend to immediatly get rid of the infected plants.
> Get rid of my treefern?? Never !! Twisted Evil Evil or Very Mad Sad Sad
> Another recommend a mixture of soft soap and spirit.
> I didn't got this at hand shortly, so i tried Terpentinseife (something
> like ox-gall soap - translation very unclear!).
> I gave an amount in a bucket full off water and watered the smaller
> plants upside down in it. Trying not to water the substrat to.
> On my treefern I used some of this mixture and a brush to brush all  
> seen
> evidence of this pestilance away
> I hope my plants will survive this emergency operation and those bugs  
> not.
> Can someone help?
> Thanks
> Peter
> --  
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------- 
> ----
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> (http://www.baumfarn.at)
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