Diseases

Diseases have a detrimental effect on plants and animals and impact on market access and agricultural production. Diseases include micro-organisms, disease agents (bacteria, fungi and viruses), infectious agents, parasites and genetic disorders.

Western Australia is free from some of the world's major agricultural and livestock diseases. Biosecurity measures on your property are vital in preventing the spread of diseases.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development provides:

  • biosecurity/quarantine measures at the WA border to prevent the entry of plant and animal diseases
  • post border biosecurity measures for harmful animal and plant diseases
  • advice on widespread diseases present in the state.

For advice on animal and plant diseases search our website, the Western Australian Organism List or contact our Pest and Disease Information Service (PaDIS).

For diagnostic services, please contact our Diagnostic Laboratory Services.

Articles

  • All gardens have a range of permanent soil-borne disease organisms which are usually contained in a balanced environment where organisms, soil conditions, and hosts interact in a complex system.

  • This web article describes the most common diseases of citrus trees and their control using natural or low-toxic methods.

  • Phytophthora root rot is the most common soil-borne disease causing plant death in native cutflower production.

  • The aim of the Western Australian Plant Pathology Reference Culture Collection (WAC) is to preserve plant pathogen isolates while providing pure cultures and genetic materials required for diagnost

  • Septoria spot (Septoria citri) is a serious pest of citrus that can affect external fruit quality. This pest is not known to occur in Western Australia.

  •  Potato spindle tuber viroid can reduce crop yields in potatoes and tomatoes. Use certified disease-free planting material and destroy infected plant material.

  • There are many economic and financial implications that need to be considered when choosing a management option. These may include:

  • The treatment of vegetable seeds prior to planting can help control seed-borne diseases. Control of these diseases is necessary to prevent reduction in the crop yield.

  • Downy mildew is caused by a fungus which has been affecting impatiens in Western Australia since 2007 after being found in Victoria the previous year.

  • Cypress canker or conifer die-back is a serious disease of exotic conifers that is common in Perth.

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