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List of Sugarcane Diseases;
1) Grassy shoot,
2) Red rot,
3) Pineapple disease,
4) Sugarcane smut.
1) Grassy Shoot
The disease is caused by a phytoplasma (specialzed
bacteria). These organisms infest the phloem tissues in
the sugarcane vascular bundles.
1. Infected plant produces larger number of thin leaved
tillers like grass so known as grassy shoot.
2. The tillers are small and yellowish white in colour.
Plant only disease-free cuttings.
2) Sugarcane smut disease:
“Also called Culmicolous smut and whip smut.”
1. Two to four months after the fungus has
infected the plant, black whip-like
structures, instead of a spindle leaf,
emerge from the meristem, or growing
point, of the plant.
2. The developing whip is a mixture of plant
tissue and fungal tissue. The whip reaches
3. Plants infected with the fungus usually
appear to have thin stalks and are often
4. They end up tillering much more than
normal and this results in leaves that are
more slender and much weaker.
1. Rogue out diseased shoots or stools.
2. Select healthy planting material.
3. Treat Planting stock with a protectant
4. Avoid ratooning of affected cane fields.
5. Rotate sugarcane with a resistant crop.
6. Plant resistant varieties.
3) Red rot
a) Longitudinal reddening of the normally
white internal tissue of the internodes
b) A discoloration, that may extend through
many joints of the stalk,
c) Poor stands of both plant and ratoon
d) Induces inversion of sucrose in mature
1. Plant resistant cultivars.
2. Plant the crop when conditions are
optimal for rapid germination and
maintain proper soil moisture.
3. Use only healthy cane for seed pieces.
4. Harvest susceptible cultivars before they
have passed the peak of maturity.
5. Practice crop rotation, with an alternate
crop at the end of the planting and
4) Pineapple disease
1. Pineapple disease primarily affects
sugarcane setts in the first weeks of
planting. The fungus infects the setts
mainly through the cut ends and from
there spreads rapidly through the
parenchyma. Infected tissue first
becomes reddened; the parenchyma
then breaks down and the interior of
the setts become hollow and
2. In the early stages of the rotting, the
strong odour of overripe pineapples is
often present and may help in
diagnosing the disease.
3. Pineapple disease can result in crops
having a patchy, uneven appearance.
When severe, the disease may seriously
reduce the germination over large areas.
4. Pineapple disease may occur in stalks
of the standing cane if the stalks are
mechanically or physically damaged,
such as by boring insects or rats.
1. A cutting of not less than three nodes
should be made to protect the center
2. For sets a temperature of 32-38 degree
Celsius with normal soil cover is
favorable for germination.
3. Protect the end of seed pieces with a
fungicide such as tilt or Benlate at 25
Sereh Virus is transmitted through cuttings.
1. Severe disease transform the cane stool into a
bunchy tuft of shoots which cease to grow
after reaching a certain height.
2. Usually these stools are of different heights.
3. Secondary shoots arising from the basal buds
are similarly affected.
4. In some stools, taller stalks may develop with
shortened internodes near the top, and leaves
formed in a fanlike arrangement.
Rats are the major animal which destroy
sugarcane crop very badly. Rats have
been reported to partially damage 8.6% -
use kill trap
tanjore bore trap
iron based trap
fumigation of burrows with aluminium
use of baits of zinc phosphide
Pigs also destroy sugarcane field.
They are control by the following
Porcupines destroy the stems of
To control the porcupine destruction
in sugar cane field use two methods
1. Hoeing and weeding operations must
start within a month after the planting
of the crop.
2. One blind hoeing (hoeing before the
crop germinates) and two to four
subsequent hoeings are generally
necessary depending upon the
intensity of weed growth and soil
3. The last hoeing is usually done when
the crop attains a height of about one
4. A deep-working hand tool such as a
spade or kasola is used.
5. Irrigation should follow immediately.
6. Control of weeds whether done manually
or with the help of herbicides, result in
an increase in tillering of about 25