Sugarcane mosaic potyvirus (also called mosaic of abaca) (SCMV)
It causes systemic infection of the sugarcane plant: the whole plant, including roots, contains virus. The symptoms (mosaic and/or necrosis) are observed on the leaves and sometimes the stems. Sometimes the whole plant is stunted. The classical symptoms are contrasting shades of green on a background of paler green to yellow chlorotic areas. It is aphid transmitted and also through infected planting material.
- Attempts to eradicate SCMV by rouging infected plants have rarely been successful. Rouging by digging out may be useful in maintaining mosaic-free seed plots of cane if the level of infection is lower than 5%.
- A close relationship exists between ants and aphid vectors of sugarcane mosaic virus. Ants can carry the aphids from one sugarcane plant to another, from grass to cane and from cane to grass. Presumably, ants also reduce natural predators and parasitoids of aphids, which would have exerted better control.
- Because aphids which transmit sugarcane mosaic virus come from outside as well as inside the sugarcane crop, take care to reduce the build up of the vector species in the vicinity. Crops of maize and sorghum are hosts of vectors and should not be grown near infected sugarcane crops.
- Alter the times of planting and harvesting so that they do not coincide with high aphid vector populations.