Mosaic Virus Monstera: Signs, Treatment & Control

Mosaic Virus Monstera Image

In my years of growing several houseplants, Monstera has been an easy-to-care option. Unfortunately, I’ve had to wrestle the famous mosaic virus monstera. 

So, if you’ve got infected plants, a virus attacks their cellular levels. If your Monstera plant is at this stage, I sympathize with you 100%. But don’t stress out. We’ve got you!

In this article, we’ll dissect the various mosaic virus attacks. Even better, we’ll look at some mosaic virus symptoms. All that’s critical when treating an infected plant or even other plants. So, it will be helpful to continue reading!

What is Monstera Mosaic Disease?

Are you curious if you’ve got an infected soil or plant because of the mosaic disease? And you do not know about such plant viruses? 

Well, it’s understandable. I’ve been there too. As for my situation, the monstera plant infected by this virus never lived to fight for long. So sad! But that shouldn’t be your case because you can quickly treat mosaic virus. 

But what is the monstera mosaic disease? It’s a virus group affecting different plant types, not monstera. Also, do you know other mosaic viruses exist? So, if you didn’t know, now you know!

Examples are the Tobacco Mosaic virus (TMV) and the Cucumber Mosaic virus (CMV). These mosaic virus types mainly affect cruciferous vegetables and nightshade. 

As for the Dasheen Mosaic Virus (GsMV), it highly affects the aroid family plants. The following are some of the aroid family plants affected by the above mosaic virus:

  • Monsteras 
  • Peace lilies
  • Philodendrons

A deadly virus attacks the cells of several indoor plants. Unfortunately, this mosaic virus isn’t any different. But what can a plant parent like you or me do whenever such a virus attacks our plants?

Well, there are several ways of treating an infected monstera plant. But I’ll cover that and more in later sections of this article. I’d, however, advise you to prevent the mosaic virus. 

The Life Cycle of The Mosaic Viruses

Like every living being, the mosaic virus also undergoes a life cycle. So, how does this mosaic virus feed? And also, how does it attack plants thriving only to kill or weaken them?

Well, the answer you and I are looking for lies within its life cycle. The mosaic virus particle, where it starts, thrives on vectors or living organisms. In this case, it’s your healthy plant.

This mosaic virus often hitchhikes on tiny insects like grasshoppers and aphids. Afterward, it’ll contact the eventual host, different plant species. When it’s in that position, it’ll continue attacking the leafy foe of the entire plant.

It attacks plants until it withers their leafy foes.

Types of Mosaic Viruses

I’m sure you remember briefly discussing the various mosaic virus types earlier. So, in this section, we detail each of them. In it, here are the different mosaic virus types:

Taro Dasheen Mosaic Virus (DsMV)

Most ornamental aroids and all edible aroids are hosts, a point worth noting. Further, light-green spots along the or in between veins are a telltale sign. Elsewhere, aphids transmit this Dasheed Mosaic Virus.

Well, at least, that’s what the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services notes. The mentioned patterns, in some instances, can vary from extra light structures between or over the veins. 

Because of that, your plant will have infected tissue. In other instances, this Dasheen Mosaic Virus distorts some of the plant’s leaves. 

On the same, the whole leaves may remain twisted or rolled, making their expansion harder. 

Tobacco Mosaic Virus

There’s an interesting fact about this Tobacco Mosaic Virus you should know. Would you like to know it? I think so.

Well, it’s known as TMV and was among the first mosaic viruses to be discovered. That was around the mid-1880s. Even better, it has several alarming facts. 

The notable one is that this strain can survive outside the plant even when its host is dead. Isn’t that AWESOME? I bet it is! But it’s otherwise when it attacks your monstera plants.

Further, if you didn’t know, this mosaic virus strain attacks several plant varieties, mostly belonging to the following plant families:

  • The Solanaceae
  • The nightshades

This Tobacco Mosaic virus mainly favors the Marigolds and Petunias among common houseplants.

Cucumber Mosaic Virus

The name “Cucumber Mosaic Virus” came about since it mainly attacks cucumbers. But apart from cucumbers, it attacks most woody and herbaceous plant species. Thus, it’s among the most common killers of such plants.

Further, ornamental plants take the largest share as the primary victims. That includes the following:

  • Bamboo
  • Petunias
  • Lillies
  • Tulips

How Do I Know If My Monstera Has Mosaic Virus? 

1. White, Green, or Yellow Streaks, Strips, or Spots on the Foliage

Leaf discoloration is the first sign monstera or other infected plants, show when a mosaic virus attacks. The monstera plants’ leaves may have either of the following:

  • White strips and spots
  • Green strips and spots
  • Yellow strips and spots

As this mosaic virus builds up, the above symptoms worsen. Thus, your monstera plant’s health will start shooting down. In mild cases of this dangerous virus, it’ll appear as small yellow spots. These spots usually appear on the monstera leaves.

Further, after worsening, the whole leaves become brown or yellow and die.

2. Yellowing Veins

Here’s another common mosaic virus symptom that may appear on your infected plant. So if you observe that, you have no option but to deal with it soon.

The mosaic virus may turn your monstera leaves yellow along their veins. 

That usually starts at the leaves’ tips as it works its way down. As it progresses, the leaf can turn yellow, brown, and later die.

3. Wrinkled or Curled Leaves

If you didn’t know, the mosaic virus also causes the monstera leaves to become curled or wrinkled. That often happens if the monstera plant isn’t getting adequate nutrients or water. 

Such moisture or nutrient inadequacy may be because of this mosaic virus. I say this since the virus may interfere with the plant’s vascular system.

4. Stunted Growth

Unfortunately, if your monstera is experiencing stunted growth, it has the mosaic virus. So, your lovely monstera won’t grow as fast as it should. Also, it means your monstera may stop growing altogether.

5. Dried Out Stems

A stemming that rapidly dries out is another common symptom of this mosaic virus. That happens when the virus restricts the monstera plant’s ability to absorb moisture.

So, the plant dehydrates if the monstera roots don’t absorb moisture.

6. Dark Green Blisters on the Leaves

Finally, if the monstera foliage has green blisters, blame the mosaic virus. Such blisters come about because of chlorophyll accumulation. And if you see such blisters, don’t ignore them. Act fast. 

Mosaic Virus vs Variegation

There’s an easy way to differentiate between the mosaic virus and the variegation on monstera. That is, the mosaic virus often causes other symptoms. Such symptoms may include the following:

  • Dried stems
  • Stunted growth
  • Curled/malformed leaves
  • Blisters

Such symptoms will help you know if our monstera plant has variegation or the mosaic virus.

What Causes Mosaic Disease?

Most houseplant owners don’t know what causes the mosaic disease on monstera. If you’re one of them, then you’re in safe hands! I’ll tell you what exactly causes this menace on monstera or other plants. 

Right into it, the following are the common causes of this virus spreading to your monstera:

  • Contaminated greenhouse environment
  • Contaminated shops
  • Homes with infected plants

Also, touching your monstera with infected hands/tools can spread this mosaic disease. Besides, insects like spider mites or aphids also spread the mosaic disease. 

Just like viruses sicken animals or us, this virus affects plants and is a pathogen. It even spreads through the following:

  • Insects
  • Close contact with an infected plant
  • Contaminated soil and tools

So, when your monstera touches this virus’ surface, it gets infected. 

What’s the Best Mosaic Virus Monstera Treatment?

Now, this is it! As always, prevention is the best treatment for this mosaic virus. That’s is since there’s no known cure for this mosaic virus. And once the mosaic virus attacks your monstera, you won’t cure it. 

This is usually a sad part. Unfortunately, you’ll need to destroy the monstera plant immediately. Otherwise, it’ll quickly spread to your other houseplants. When the viruses attack, the entire leaf system will be affected.

Now to the happy part, you can control the damage if this virus attacks your monstera plants. This control helps prevent the mosaic virus from spreading further. You can do so by clearing and destroying any plant with the mosaic disease. 

I recommend burning or throwing away the infected plants.

How to Prevent Mosaic Virus?

1. Wash Your Hands Before and After Handling a Plant

Mosaic virus prevention solely lies upon you. And washing your hands before or after handling your monstera is the first step. Otherwise, you can boost the spread of this mosaic virus.

That’ll happen when you touch infected plants and your lovely monstera.

2. Quarantine Newly Bought Plants

Again, it would be helpful to quarantine a plant before adding it to your other plant collections. Doing so involves keeping your new plant in a different area or room. It should stay in that area/room for around 2-4 weeks.

That’ll ensure the new plant isn’t infected with pests/diseases. 

3. Keep an Eye Out for Pests

Further, inspect your monstera plant for pets regularly. I say that since pests like spider mites and aphids can attack your monstera. But if the monstera is already infected, take action immediately.

Often, insects spread mosaic viruses. So, regular plant checks for pests are essential. 

4. Disinfect Tools and Surfaces

Finally, it would help to disinfect surfaces/tools that touch your monstera. That includes the following:

  • Pots
  • Pruning shears
  • Soil
  • Other gardening tools

Soak these tools in a mixture of bleach (10%). You should do the soaking for about 30 minutes.

Is Mosaic Virus Harmful to Monstera Plants?

Yes, the mosaic virus can be harmful to your monstera plants. But the monstera can live for some time with the mosaic virus. Unfortunately, it won’t have healthy growth, dying eventually. 

This mosaic virus is extra contagious to other plants. Thus, it would help if you destroyed monstera plants with this virus the soonest. 

Otherwise, the chance of the mosaic virus spreading will shoot up. 

Does Mosaic Virus Stay in Monstera’s Soil?

Yes, a mosaic virus can live in your monstera’s soil. The mosaic virus sometimes stays in monstera plants for a year. Because of that, you must dispose of the infected plant’s soil.

Otherwise, the monstera soil will hasten the spread of the mosaic virus. Thus, making it move to your other plants growing in the same soil. 

FAQs

Is Mosaic Virus Contagious? 

Yes. The mosaic virus can be contagious, like viruses affecting animals and humans. Also, it can spread to different plants via the following:

  • Insects
  • Tools
  • Insects
  • Infected pots (here’s a guide on picking the right pot for monstera plants.)
  • Potting soil
  • Proximity to infected plants

It’ll be infected if your monstera plant touches surfaces with this mosaic virus.

Can monstera deliciosa get Mosaic Virus?

Yes, the mosaic virus Monstera Deliciosa is common. Further, the mosaic group consists of viruses that affect several plant types. Such plants include your favorite monstera. Viruses attack an organism’s cells, and this specific virus isn’t any different. The mosaic virus will attack your monstera plant on a cellular level, killing it eventually. 

How quickly does Mosaic Virus spread?

The mosaic virus spreads within minutes or hours. In particular, the cucumber mosaic virus spreads to plants via many aphid species. These aphids can only retain the transmission ability for a shorter period. Thus, the mosaic virus spread is local and very rapid in most cases.

Can philodendrons get Mosaic Virus?

Yes, mosaic virus philodendron can happen too. The Dasheen mosaic virus affects mainly the Araceae family members only. Within that family, the range of hosts is quite broad. The range encompasses species the following 12 genera species:

  • Aglaonema
  • Amorphophallus
  • Anthurium
  • Arisaema
  • Caladium
  • Colocasia
  • Cryptocoryne
  • Dieffenbachia
  • Philodendron
  • Spathiphyllum
  • Xanthosoma
  • Zante- deschia 

How do you treat monstera Adansonii Mosaic Virus?

Unfortunately, there’s bad news. There’s no known treatment for this monstera disease. Since it’s a virus, you can’t kill it in whichever steps you take. Ultimately, your monstera adansonii will die.

How long does Mosaic Virus stay in soil?

Investigations/studies show that the Mosaic Virus can survive in the soil for a year or more. But that’s subject to relatively faster inactivation under several natural conditions.

Which organelle is affected by Mosaic Viruses?

Mosaic viruses can affect the chloroplast membrane. The two most culprits are;Turnip Yellow Mosaic Virus (TYMV) found in the Tymoviridae family and Turnip Mosaic Virus (TuMV) found in the Potyviridae family.

Conclusion

Take preventative measures if you notice one of your monstera plants has the mosaic virus. That’ll help derail the virus’ spread. Also, isolate the plants you suspect may have this mosaic virus. 

Again, dispose of the infected monstera plants immediately. 

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