Identification of plant pathogens in high-tunnel tomato production in Minnesota, USA

M. A. Grabowskia, A. M. Orshinsky

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Located between 43 and 50°N, the state of Minnesota, USA, averages 138.5 days above 0°C per year. Growing degree days range from 1300 to 2700. Growers of warm-season crops like tomato have a greater risk of crop loss due to frequent low temperature events at the beginning and end of the growing season. High tunnels are low-input, plastic-covered structures used to protect crops from damaging temperatures, wind, and rain. Temperature and humidity inside a high tunnel can differ significantly from field conditions, changing the profile of plant-pathogenic microorganisms that persist in the crop. A 2013 survey of 122 commercial high-tunnel growers found that 82% could identify fewer than 50% of the pest problems in their high tunnels without assistance; however, only 8% had ever submitted a plant sample for diagnosis. To determine which pathogens were present in high-tunnel tomato crops, 15 farms throughout the state were scouted by plant pathologists three times during the growing season in 2014 and 2015. Scouting trips were planned to coincide with established seedlings, mature flowering plants, and mature plants at harvest. At each visit, scouts examined the crop and took plant samples for diagnosis. In total, 18 known pathogens and two unknown viruses were recorded over the 2-year survey period using microscopic, serological and molecular methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication5th International Symposium on Tomato Diseases
Subtitle of host publicationPerspectives and Future Directions in Tomato Protection
EditorsR. Fern�ndez-Mu�oz, C.R. Beuz�n, E. Moriones
PublisherInternational Society for Horticultural Science
Number of pages5
ISBN (Print)9789462612037
StatePublished - Jul 26 2018

Publication series

NameActa Horticulturae
ISSN (Print)0567-7572
ISSN (Electronic)2406-6168

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding for this project was provided by the United States Department of Agriculture through the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture Hatch Project 1007002. The authors would like to acknowledge Vince Fritz, Terrance Nennich, Randy Nelson, Ben Lockhart, Lillian Garber, Blake Wachter, and the University of Minnesota Plant Diagnostic Clinic for their assistance in this project.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 International Society for Horticultural Science. All rights reserved.


  • Bacteria
  • Disease
  • Fungi
  • Hoop house
  • Virus


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