TSWV Pressure Still Not as Bad as Used to be

Clint Thompson Peanuts

By Clint Thompson

Tomato spotted wilt virus (TSWV) resistance in Georgia-06G peanuts could be better. But growers are still in a much better situation than they faced during the time of Georgia Green.

Ringspots on peanut leaves are indicators of TSWV. Photo credit: Thomas County ANR blog.

Scott Monfort, University of Georgia Extension peanut agronomist, shared those thoughts following a challenging production season that saw an increase in TSWV.

“Could we use another variety with a little bit better resistance? Yes, we could. We’ve had a higher level of virus this year than we’ve had in the last 10 years. It is nowhere near what it would be if it was back when we had Georgia Green. The virus during Georgia Green, we didn’t have any good resistance,” Monfort said. “If we would have had this same level of virus back then it would be catastrophic. Today, yes, it’s bad, but we’re still growing fairly decent yields out there.”

Georgia-06G is the predominant peanut produced in Georgia. One of its popular traits was its high resistance to TSWV. But that is likely no longer the case.

“The resistance is helping us. Can we have a better variety with better resistance? Yes, but we have just not gotten there yet,” Monfort said. “They’re working hard at it every year. We’ve got some with better resistance to the virus, but they have problems with other things like leaf spot. We hadn’t got that whole package yet, but hopefully in the next five years, maybe we will.”

Monfort estimates that 06G is still about 85% of the seedstock. Producers should also implement other management strategies that will help in minimizing the virus.

“The two biggest things we fight the virus is resistance, but we also need Thimet and not plant in April all of the time. Now as 06 got better and we didn’t have as much virus, everybody started pushing a third of the crop into April. That stirs the pot even more,” Monfort said. “You’re putting a lot of stress on 06, that’s what they’re doing. By not doing what’s on the Peanut RX, you’re putting a lot of stress on that variety to hold up. It’s just not capable of doing it under that situation.”