Bacterial Canker of Capsicums and Tomatoes

Corynebacterium michiganense pv. michiganense


A bacterial disease of Solanum species. Plants grow from infected seed may look healthy until nearly mature then the disease spreads rapidly. Lower wilt and often die on one side initially and this progresses up the plant. Yellow brown streaks may appear on stems and petioles which may then crack. Cutting the stem reveals brown vascular staining and cavities. Plants may be stunted. Fruit develops 3 mm diameter spots which are initially raised and white and turn dark brown with a white rim and rough centre.

Species Affected:

Capsicum, Tomato.

Nightshades, Thornapples.


Spores spread by raindrop splash.

Seed may carry the infection.

Favoured by wet windy conditions

Life Cycle:

Origin and History:



Management and Control:

Use healthy seed.

Treat seed before planting.

Don't plant on areas that have had a susceptible crop or species in the last 3-5 years.

Destroy diseased crop residues.

Remove and burn infected plants.

Avoid overhead watering.

Don't handle healthy plants after handling diseased plants.

Disinfect pruning knives with 0.1% copper sulphate.

Wash hands in warm soapy water after handling diseased plants.

Copper sprays can help limit spread.

Control Solanaceous weeds.


Use healthy seed or treat with hot water at 56 C for 30 minutes for Tomatoes.

Dip stakes in 2% formalin between plantings.

Related and Similar Species:




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