EPPO Global Database

EPPO Reporting Service no. 04 - 2008 Num. article: 2008/073

First report of Xylella fastidiosa in avocado (Persea americana)

Since the late 1990s, chlorotic mottling, marginal scorch, deformation of leaves, defoliation, shortening of internodes, and branch dieback have been observed in avocado trees (Persea americana) in Costa Rica. The symptoms were not uniformly distributed in the trees (only some branches were symptomatic) and resembled those of leaf scorch diseases caused by Xylella fastidiosa (EPPO A1 List). In Costa Rica, X. fastidiosa occurs on coffee and citrus trees. From 2000 to 2004, 227 avocado trees were tested for the presence of X. fastidiosa (DAS-ELISA) and 188 were found positive. Transmission studies and molecular tests (electron microscopy, PCR) confirmed the presence of the bacterium in diseased trees. This is the first report of X. fastidiosa in avocado trees.


Montero-Astúa, Saborío G, Chacón-Díaz C, Garita L, Villalobos W, Moreira L, Hartung JS, Rivera C (2008) First report of Xylella fastidiosa in avocado in Costa Rica. Plant Disease 92(1), p 175.