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A Wilt and Crown Rot of Primula Species Caused by Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora. S. M. McCarter, Professor of Plant Pathology, University of Georgia, Athens 30602. E. H. Moody, and M. L. Waindle. Extension Plant Pathologist, and Former Research Technician, University of Georgia, Athens 30602. Plant Dis. 72:672-675. Accepted for publication 26 February 1988. Copyright 1988 The American Phytopathological Society. DOI: 10.1094/PD-72-0672.

A crown rot and wilt of Primula × polyantha and P. malacoides caused significant damage in a commercial greenhouse operation in Georgia in 1985. A rapidly growing bacterium, later identified as Erwinia carotovora subsp. carotovora, was consistently isolated from the diseased plants, and Koch’s postulates were fulfilled. The bacterium attacked P. × polyantha, P. malacoides, P. obconica, and P. vulgaris (P. acaulis), with P. malacoides apparently being less susceptible than the other three. Wounds, high temperatures (?25 C), and high moisture were conducive to infection and disease development. This bacterium is a potential threat to the expanding commercial production of Primula spp. Prevention of wounding, maintenance of a low greenhouse temperature (<25 C), and avoidance of excessive moisture may be useful preventive measures.