Plantwise Factsheets for Farmers
Tomato yellow leaf curl management
Tomato yellow leaf curl virus
Recognize the problem
yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) is a very common and destructive disease of
tomato. Young plants that become infected fail to grow and become short and
bushy. The leaves of infected plants are small and yellow between the veins
and curl upwards forming a cup-shape.
Infected plants produce fewer flowers and fruits.
virus attacks a wide range of crops including bell pepper, morning glory and
billy goat weed. The virus lives inside the plant and cannot be spread in
soil, water or by the wind. It is moved between plants by whiteflies and
thrips. It is not transmitted by seed or through damage to the plant. The
virus cannot be controlled directly with chemical sprays, but the insects
that carry the disease can be controlled to prevent further spread. Once a
plant becomes infected it cannot be cured and must be removed. High levels of
infection normally occur during fruit set.
Use resistant varieties such
as DV-2962, SAVIOR, PT 18. Contact the nearest extension officers for further
- Remove and compost
- Between tomato crops
remove volunteer or leftover tomato plants
- Do not rotate with other
alternative hosts of the virus such as red pepper
- Regularly monitor
populations of whiteflies and thrips in the crop as this can give early
warning of a disease outbreak. Monitoring is done through the use of yellow
sticky traps, or by shaking the plant by hand. Shaking the plants causes the
adult whiteflies to fly from the plant.
- If you see whiteflies on
more than 5 plants or if more than 10 are caught by the trap within a day,
consider using an insecticide spray such as Thiamethoxam (pre-harvest interval
- The traps can be easily
made by spreading sticky material (e.g. Tanglefoot or cooking oil) onto one
side of a yellow card (25 cm length x 15 cm width). The trap should be placed
at about 20 cm above the top of the crop with 20 traps/ha.
When using a pesticide, always wear protective clothing and follow the instructions on the product label, such as dosage, timing of application, and pre-harvest interval.
The recommendations in this factsheet are relevant to:
Plantwise Factsheets Library app
Get all of the factsheets and pest management decision guides from this website in an offline format via the Plantwise Factsheets Library app.