Plant diseases caused by phytoplasmas have increasing importance in all over the world for fruit growers. Lately, phytoplasma diseases occur on many fruit varieties and responsible for serious losses both in quality and quantity of fruit production. In the long-run these diseases cause destruction of fruit trees. The apricot phytoplasma disease... (Ca. Phytoplasma prunorum) was first reported in Europe in 1924 from France. In 1992 the disease has also been identified in Hungary. On the base of growers' signals serious damages of "Candidatus Phytoplasma prunorum" Seemüller and Schneider, 2004 (formerly: European stone fruit yellows phytoplasma) could be observed in different stone fruit plantations in the famous apricot-growing area nearby Gönc town, Northern-Hungary. Field examinations have been begun in 2009 in several stone fruit plantations in Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén County mainly in Gönc region which is one of the most important apricot growing regions in Hungary, named “Gönc Apricot Growing Area”. Our goals were to diagnose the occurrence of Ca. Phytoplasma prunorum on stone fruits (especially on apricot) in the North-Hungarian growing areas by visual diagnostics and confirm data by laboratory PCR-based examinations. All the 28 collected samples were tested in laboratory trials and at 13 samples from apricot, peach, sour cherry and wild plum were confirmed the presence of phytoplasma (ESFY). On the base of observations it seems evident that the notable losses caused by "Ca. Phytoplasma prunorum" is a new plant health problem to manage for fruit growers, especially apricot producers in Hungary.
...5); font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; text-decoration-style: initial; text-decoration-color: initial;">In the last twenty years, three phytoplasma diseases were identified in Hungary, viz. European Stone Fruit Yellows (ESFY) (caused by Candidatus Phytoplasma prunorum), pear decline (caused by Candidatus Phytoplasma pyri), and apple proliferation (caused by Candidatus Phytoplasma mali). Candidatus Phytoplasma prunorum was isolated from apricot, peach, plum and japanese plum. Cacopsylla pruni the vector of ESFY was also isolated and identified. Infection of Candidatus Phytoplasma pyri was diagnosed from pear and Candidatus Phytoplasma mali was found on apple and pear. The three phytoplasmas cause different damages on their host plants. The most economically important phytoplasma disease is the ESFY. It seriously impairs apricot and japanase plum trees. After infection of apricots and japanese plums show yellowing and defoliation, and within a few years die in apoplexy-like symptoms. The disease on japanese plum is so severe that this fruit practically can not be cultivated in Hungary. Pear decline is the most serious problem especially in intensive pear plantations. The vector Cacopsylla pyri, C. pyrisuga and C. pyricola can be found in almost all pear orchards. Because of the regular presence of psyllids in intensive pear orchards the insecticide control is necessary. Apple proliferation is not an important disease in Hungary. All of our isolations of ’Candidatus Phytoplasma mali’ occured in organic orchards and record was not available in Hungary lately.