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Citrus Leprosis Fruit, Leaf, and Stem Symptom Identification 

Amit Levy, Ozgur Batuman, Megan M. Dewdney, and Jamie D. Burrow

Citrus Leprosis Facts

  • Nonsystemic virus, does not move throughout the tree.
  • Spread by various flat mite species (Brevipalpus spp.).
  • Primarily affects sweet orange and mandarin varieties, but other varieties can be affected.
  • Limes are known to be asymptomatic, possibly resistant.
  • Lesions are the result of the virus being injected by flat mite feeding.
  • Disease management begins with managing the mites.

Fruit Symptoms

  • Early symptoms are chlorotic lesions on fruit (see other side).
  • Early lesions on fruit are flat, generally circular with early stages of necrosis.
  • Older necrotic lesions turn rusty-red to brown with depressed centers and surrounded by a yellowish halo in immature fruit.
  • Older lesions can exhibit concentric green rings within the lesion (also called zone pattern).
  • Under high temperatures, the necrotic center may crack.

Leaf Symptoms

  • 1 to 3 centimeters (0.39 to 1.2 inches) in diameter on both sides of the leaf.
  • Start as chlorotic circular lesions.
  • Later become brown in color with pinpoint pattern on yellow background.
  • Lesions on leaves are usually flat but later become slightly raised.

Stem Symptoms

  • Early stage, shallow lesions on stem.
  • Reddish-brown color and are irregular, raised.
  • Older lesions cause corky, scaly bark.
Immature fruit symptoms with halos.
Figure 1. Immature fruit symptoms with halos.
Credit: UF/IFAS
Fruit symptoms with zone pattern.
Figure 2. Fruit symptoms with zone pattern.
Credit: UF/IFAS
 
Leaf symptoms with zone pattern.
Figure 3. Leaf symptoms with zone pattern.
Credit: UF/IFAS
 
Early bark scaling stem symptoms.
Figure 4. Early bark scaling stem symptoms. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 

 Leprosis lesions are localized, and the virus does not move throughout the tree.

Necrotic fruit symptoms; no halo.
Figure 5. Necrotic fruit symptoms; no halo. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Early fruit symptoms.
Figure 6. Early fruit symptoms.
Credit: UF/IFAS
 
Chlorotic circular lesions (zone pattern) on upper side of leaf.
Figure 7. Chlorotic circular lesions (zone pattern) on upper side of leaf. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Chlorotic circular lesions (zone pattern) on under side of leaf.
Figure 8. Chlorotic circular lesions (zone pattern) on under side of leaf. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Fruit symptoms with zones and slight necrosis in the middle.
Figure 9. Fruit symptoms with zones and slight necrosis in the middle. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Concentric green rings within lesions on immature and mature fruit.
Figure 10. Concentric green rings within lesions on immature and mature fruit. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
Ring structure (zone pattern) of the lesion.
Figure 11. Ring structure (zone pattern) of the lesion. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 

 

Young (left) to old leaf lesions (far right) on leaves.
Figure 12. Young (left) to old lesions (far right) on leaves. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Fruit symptoms showing color change.
Figure 13. Fruit symptoms showing color change. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Older, depressed lesions.
Figure 14. Older, depressed lesions. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Young twig symptoms with rings.
Figure 15. Young twig symptoms with rings. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
 
Severe bark scaling stem symptoms.
Figure 16. Severe bark scaling stem symptoms. 
Credit: UF/IFAS 
Peer Reviewed

Publication #PP365

Date: 10/31/2022

RELATED TOPICS

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About this Publication

This publication is PP365, one of a series of the Plant Pathology Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date November 2022. Visit the EDIS website at https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu for the currently supported version of this publication.

About the Authors

Amit Levy, assistant professor, UF/IFAS Citrus Research and Education Center; Ozgur Batuman, assistant professor, UF/IFAS Southwest Florida REC; Megan M. Dewdney, associate professor, UF/IFAS Citrus REC; and Jamie D. Burrow, Extension program manager, UF/IFAS Citrus REC; UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

Contacts

  • Jamie Burrow