WSU Extension


Pea : Virus diseases
(revision date: 6/3/2014)

Several virus diseases affect peas. Pea Enation Mosaic Virus, Pea Seedborne Mosaic Virus, and Pea Streak Viruses are viruses of importance in Washington. These viruses are spread by aphids including the pea aphid. Pea Seedborne Mosaic Virus is also carried by infected seed. Pea Enation Mosaic Virus causes mottling, stunting, and enations (small bumps or blisters) on leaves. Pods and leaves may be distorted. Pea Seedborne Mosaic Virus causes pod distortions and stunting, rosetting, and rolling of leaves. Leaves and pods appear mottled, and infected seeds may have a brownish stain or discoloration. Pea Streak Viruses cause brown to purple spotting or streaking on leaves, stems, or pods and result in rapid death of plants. The viruses affect many hosts in the pea family (Leguminosae). Alfalfa, clovers, and weeds can serve as sources of infection.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Plant prior to March 31 (approximate date) to avoid infestation by aphids.
  • Control aphids.
  • Control weeds in and around the garden (particularly those in the pea family) to reduce infection risks.
  • Plant enation-resistant varieties such as 'Almoto', 'Aspen', 'Aurora', 'Citation', 'Corvallis', 'Freezer 50', 'Green Sugar', 'Knight', 'Mohawk', 'Oregon Sugar Pod', 'Perfected Freezer 60', 'Prospector', and 'Trident'.
  • Plant certified, virus-free seed to reduce chances of seedborne mosaic.
  • Do not plant near alfalfa, which is a host for pea streak viruses.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

None recommended

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Caption: Virus-infected peas
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Distorted pea pods from virus infection
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Virus-infected peas
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Pea streak virus symptoms
Photo by: R.S. Byther