Pantoea stewartii

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Pantoea stewartii symptoms on maize (click on image to enlarge it)
Author(s): J.K. Pataky, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Source: IPM Images
Pantoea stewartii symptoms on sudangrass (Sorghum bicolor ssp. drummondii) (click on image to enlarge it)
Author(s): Gerald Holmes, Valent USA Corporation
Source: IPM Images

Pantoea stewartii (Smith 1898) Mergaert et al. 1993 - (Stewart's wilt)

The bacterium causes a serious disease of maize in North America. It is a quarantine organism in other regions and in many countries. It is transmitted by the corn flea beetle and through seeds. Infections of seeds can cause wilting at the seedling stage and the seedlings will die in most cases. When the infection occurs at a later stage, the maize leaves develop long yellowish streaks which dry out. The bacterium spreads inside the plants via the xylem and can reach the developing seeds. It can be present in the seeds but will not infect the embryo. The seeds are, therefore, able to germinate. Sweet corn is particularly susceptible to seed infection.

Synonyms:
Erwinia stewartii

Vernacular names
• Deutsch: Stewart'sche Krankheit des Mais
• English: Stewart's wilt
• Français: flétrissement de Stewart du maïs


For a review on the identification and biology of this pathogen see the EPPO Bulletin (2016).