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Viruses

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Several types of viruses infect raspberry plants causing a variety of symptoms, including mosaic yellow patterning of the leaves, leaf curl and/or crinkle, cane dwarfing and crumbly berries. Once a plant becomes infected with a virus, it cannot be cured. All infected plants, including the roots, should be removed from the planting and destroyed. Viruses are typically spread by aphids, but in some cases (e.g., crumbly berry) nematodes may be responsible. When these creatures feed on infected plants they can take in the virus and then spread it to other plants. In order to prevent the spread of viruses, start with certified, virus-free planting stock. Plant your raspberries away from any wild brambles which may be harboring viruses that could be spread to your plants. A distance of at least 600 feet between cultivated raspberries and any wild brambles is recommended. Controlling the insects which spread these diseases is usually not a practical method of preventing infection. However, some raspberry varieties are resistant to aphid feeding and are thus somewhat protected. These varieties include Canby, Titan and Royalty.