WSU Extension


Tomato : Verticillium wilt
(revision date: 8/24/2015)

Verticillium wilt is caused by a fungus commonly found in the soil. Many species of plants are affected by Verticillium. Tomato and potato are favored hosts. Infected plants wilt, are stunted, and have yellow leaves which tend to roll inward. Yellowing occurs first on the lower leaves. Leaves dry out, turn brown, and die. The vascular tissues are discolored (noticeable when cuts are made into stems). Typically, the fungus attacks the roots and moves throughout the plant via the vascular system. Young plants may be killed. Older plants generally suffer from decreased growth and lower yields.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Crop rotation may be useful, but do not plant potato or tomato (except resistant varieties) into infested soil.
  • Plant healthy seedlings.
  • Plant resistant varieties (typically indicated by "V" in seed catalogs). A list is available in the current PNW Plant Disease Management Handbook. Other Verticillium-resistant vegetables include celery, lettuce, peas, beans, and asparagus.
  • Control weed hosts (including nightshades) in and around the garden.
  • Clean up plant debris and destroy or discard (do not compost) diseased materials.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

None recommended

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Caption: Verticillium wilt
Photo by: C. Miles
Caption: Verticillium wilt (early dying) on potato
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Vascular discoloration from Verticillium wilt on impatiens
Photo by: R.S. Byther