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Looking for expert or pics of mosaic virus

Discussion in 'Plant Problems' started by Hibbidy, Oct 12, 2008.

  1. Hibbidy

    Hibbidy Registered

    Hi all, been lurking for a long time but this is my first post. Wish it were under better circumstances.

    First a little background. I have been growing for 15 years and have been a smoker the entire time. Usually smoke in the rooms as they are the only part of my residences that were for me alone. Never had a problem.

    Recently I had an issue with spider mites. Tried several home made and commercial sprays before discovering no pest strips which eliminated them. The last spray I tried was a nicotene formula. One of the sites I referred to didn't mention boiling at all and another mentioned that it was an optional step to prevent tobacco mosaic virus which probably cannot be spread to mj anyway. I have since read otherwise.

    I heated the water to boiling then removed from heat and soaked tobacco from butts wrapped in a paper towel. Sprayed everything, mothers, clones and some that just started flowering. It worked about as well as any of the other sprays, meaning it knocked them down but was not effective for eradication.

    Now I have some weird looking leaf patterns and it appears to be affecting all of the plants. They have been looking consistently rough because of all the recent spraying (neem, alcohol, soaps, etc.) but I have not sprayed in several days and it appears to be spreading. I do not believe it is a nutrient or PH issue as there are three different sets of plants which receive three different formulas which have been successful for me in the past. But it is possible since this is a new location and variations in tap water quality could be causing lockout.

    Does anyone have experience with TMV? Is it generally fatal or will the plants limp along looking and yielding like crap? I have searched the web and cannot find any pics of mj with this virus. I have pics from three different plants showing what appears to be the same problem. The patterns appeared on two of them just over the past night.

    Any help would be appreciated since the sooner I know for sure whether it is this virus or not, I can take appropriate steps such as shutting down, sterilizing, and getting new clone or seed stock. Thanks in advance.

    Attached Files:

  2. Hibbidy

    Hibbidy Registered


    Since there hasn't been a response and I was unable to find additional information I will provide an update so others may be able to identify this problem or better yet, avoid it altogether.

    After trying different remedies with different plants in each of the environments without success, I am 99% certain that this is a TMV outbreak. All of the veg plants and mothers have been moved into the flowering room and the veg box (2x4x4) has been sanitized then repainted.

    The mothers were cloned as I have found in the past that ph or nutrient issues present in mothers quickly improve for the cuttings (water clones in this case) and the condition has progressed in the clones at a steady pace. They will be tossed if they look the same or worse after rooting in 3 more days or so.

    The problems have been the same for all of the plants, both in the rather humid, low ventilation, low light (240w flouro), mother/clone box (2x4x4) and the light humidity, high ventilation, 1000w flowering area (3x8x8). Different fertilizer strategies were tried with selected plants without success over the past week. Some were flushed, others were lightly fertilized, some were given increased dosages or alternate fertilizers all with PH ranging from 6.2 to 6.8. Tested runoff and soil ph with optimal results.

    The consistent symptoms I have observed are a gradual mottling on the lower fan leaves with a lumpy necrosis spreading from the tip and edges back towards the leaf stem bending the leaf downward. The tips turn black and the necrosis seems to spread more quickly in higher temperatures. The condition spreads up the plant from the bottom. Other less consistent symptoms are misshapen new growth, leaves bending backwards, one leaf affected at a time, and slightly different shades of necrosis depending on strain and growing conditions. The duration from the nicotine spray (10/09) to appearance of symptoms was 1-2 days.

    The speed in which it progresses makes it so that mothers can probably be kept alive and cloned for quite some time but the vegged clones will not survive through flowering. Large plants already flowering at the time of infection may not make it more than 4 weeks before the fan leaves are all gone and it starts eating the buds if they aren't dead already.

    Attached are some pics of the clones, some of the same leaves or plants from the first set of pics, and the overcrowded flowering area. The flowering area shows a mix of big bud, white widow max, and shiva skunk (i think) in different stages of flowering from a day to three weeks.

    This has been a learning experience and I hope this information helps others who encounter the same issues. Never use a nicotine spray for spider mites would be my advice. No Pest strips will eliminate the problem and if you don't do pesticides then biological controls or soaps would be more effective and natural anyway. I should have consulted more sources before using a tobacco mixture and had I been aware of the absolute necessity of boiling or even known more about mosaic virus in cannabis, I never would have tried it.

    Attached Files:

    • Like Like x 1
  3. stinkyattic

    stinkyattic CultiModerVatorAtor

    Inconsistent with the pattern of TMV. More likely you have been reverse-foliar-feeding with all the liquids. Get a bottle of GH Micro and add an eyedropperfull to your tobacco spray to prevent this, or just use it as a light foliar feed once in a while.
    It also looks like the plants need more ventilation and more food, although the tips DO look burnt. Flsuh plants that haven't been flushed yet, check that there is a gallon of soil per foot of main stem, feed with a grow fert at 1/2 strength IMMEDIATELY after flush, I recommend one like pure blend pro or canna that has organic acids in it. That will help with soil problems.
    Also, moving grow bags around is a bad idea. They are intended to be filled and jsut left in place. If you need to move plants on the regular, use polypots instead.
  4. Weedhound

    Weedhound Registered+

    And they're not in a hydro hut are they?
  5. phatsesh101

    phatsesh101 Registered+

    im gonna have to back up stinky on this i see a need for more ventilation through the plants. and it also looks hungry and like your ph is fluxuating.
    i would cut off all the infected areas but i dont see the transfer of this through smoked cigs not to mention the leaves curl upward with tmv
  6. stinkyattic

    stinkyattic CultiModerVatorAtor

    Another thing to note is that transmission of TMV via commercial cigs is unlikely. Most are chemically processed and about as far from plant material as a brown paper bag, haha. Natural cigs or cigars are riskier. I had this discussion with a 3rd-generation orchid grower who said his Gramps used to smoke Marlboros like a chimney in the greenhouses, no problems, but he won't let his crew smoke in there just for peace of mind, and American Spirits are REALLY popular around here, and those aren't processed much. Just things to think abotu.
  7. Hibbidy

    Hibbidy Registered

    Thank you for the advice

    I appreciate the great advice and observations. You are giving me hope. I had been alternating the mite sprays with a GH foliar feeding to avoid leeching effects and I was certain that was the cause of the initial mottling, but it kept progressing, long after the spraying has been stopped.

    Several of the plants were heavily flushed with ppm/PH readings showing no more salts were coming out. They are the ones with the lighter shades of green in the flowering area. It has not slowed the progress of the necrosis however. Increasing the formula for others caused a little burn but nothing severe and also did not slow or stop the spread.

    Regarding ventilation and low ferts. Totally agree, but it is by design, the mother/clone box has been used for years and due to the limited space and the need for only 20 clones once per month, I prefer the mothers grow slowly. Though intentionally allowing a plant to become chronically undernourished and eventually root bound may seem crazy, it has never been fatal and they serve their purpose quite well, sometimes for 2-3 years before being replaced. They usually only get ferts with every 3rd or 4th watering.

    The flower room is new for me but if anything it is over-ventilated I think. With 192 total cubic feet being serviced by a 172cfm can fan combo should recycle all of the air in the room in just over a minute. I installed an intake vent with a back flow flapper at the floor of the room next to the door to make sure there is minimal resistance. Synchronizing the CO2 injection was a pain since I am used to an external intake through a sealed light cooling system instead of an in room pull through like this one but I have suspended it for now so as not to waste it on sickly growth.

    The flowering plants have shown the same symptoms at the same time while having a different fert formula and there wasn't a dead leaf on them the day they were sprayed with the tobacco tea at almost 2 weeks into 12/12 and a total of 6 weeks from clone transplant. They weren't what I would consider perfectly healthy from all the spraying, but there was nothing dying and falling off.

    I wasn't sure about the grow bags, this is my first time using them and they seemed like a good choice. Though with the extra movement from squeezing more plants than planned into that area I am sure there has been some damage and I probably will not use them again. These are new strains for me from seed and I had planned to use soil initially to weed out males and pick my favorites before transitioning to a SOG in an ebb and gro system.

    The mothers usually look kinda sickly (red stems and whatnot) but once I place the clones in the water tub, they perk right up, root within a week then start rapid healthy new growth before I usually get around to transplanting them after 10 days or so. Attached is a pic of a clone on day 5 that has steadily gotten worse. It was healthy and green when it was cut and has white pre-root lumps on the stem indicating it is progressing normally other than the necrotic spots.

    The cigs used were Winstons, supposedly additive free. Yeah right, I don't believe it either. Most of it was butts, however I did add a couple of whole cancer sticks because it didn't look like I had enough. I have always smoked in the rooms, often taking cuttings while juggling a cig. I have even put them out by touching the cherry in reservoirs. Nasty habit I know, but it was never an issue and I would be the first to call BS on claims of a virus spread from handling them around plants.

    Don't get me wrong, I value the advice and really hope I am mistaken, but I have never seen anything like this. The fact that it is so consistently progressing in different isolated environments and against normally successful countermeasures makes it difficult for me to accept it is nothing more than lockout, bad nutes, poor ventilation, and/or outgrown containers which I have never had a problem diagnosing and correcting before. The timing of it is uncanny as well but I truly hope it is just coincidence. The pics I have viewed of other plant species with mosaic virus look similar but that is a poor comparison which is why I have committed, what is for me, a desperate act and posted for more information.

    If someone can provide a detailed first hand description of TMV progression and patterns or provide some pics which can help me eliminate it as a possibility it would be greatly appreciated. I have already sprouted new seedstock in the sanitized veg box and will be getting fresh clones over the weekend so I want to identify the cause before it could set me back again.

    I will flush with PH balanced water, then add 1/2 strength ferts (giving earth juice a try) as recommended on those that haven't been flushed. The clone/mother chamber will be kept open over the weekend to allow more ventilation and I will replace select mothers, hello herm ;). The flower room will also have the door cracked the next few days to make sure there is ample airflow. Temps are usually in the lower 80s in there and getting them down further cannot hurt.

    Is it possible the No Pest strips could harm the plants like this? Or could I have encountered a type of mold problem from the new area that is hard to notice otherwise? Sorry I write so much, I just want to be as thorough as possible. Thanks for taking the time to wade through it all and offer some feedback.

    Attached Files:

  8. Weedhound

    Weedhound Registered+

    By reading between the lines I'm getting that you are NOT growing in a hydro hut.
  9. Hibbidy

    Hibbidy Registered

    Sorry Weedhound, I missed your question. I use a pair of 2'x4'x4' plywood and pine crates for the mother/clones and veg plants that I think are similar to hydro huts.
  10. Weedhound

    Weedhound Registered+

    That's long you aren't growing in one......there was an issue awhile back with some defective HH's and they were...suffocating the plants or something....if I recall correctly due to some fumes leaking from the plastic or something of that nature.

    That's the only reason I asked........soil growing is NOT what I know much about.

    Good luck.....Stinkster is the best so hopefully she can help you work it out..
  11. stinkyattic

    stinkyattic CultiModerVatorAtor

    That's not a pattern of damage with which I am familiar. I am going to bring this thread to the attention of a better horticulturalist.
  12. phatsesh101

    phatsesh101 Registered+

    what i think, but just a thought, oh and a better one then stinky huh :wtf:

    Boron-toxicity symptoms
    Brownish leaf tips and dark brown elliptical spots on leaves.
    B toxicity first appears as chlorosis of the tips and margins of older
    leaves. Two to four weeks later, dark brown elliptical spots appear on
    these discolored areas, which later turn brown and then dry up. Necrotic
    spots are most prominent at panicle initiation. Some varieties exhibit
    discoloration only at leaf tips and margins. Vegetative growth does not
    decrease markedly.

    Tobacco substitutes comprising an organic binder containing boric oxide or boron oxyacids and their ammonium, alkali metal and alkaline earth metal salts are disclosed. The disclosed tobacco substitute may comprise from about 2 to about 95% by weight boric oxide, boron oxyacid, or boron oxyacid salt and from about 5 to about 50% by weight, of the organic binder wherein during combustion the boron compound melts or fuses to form a stable ash. The tobacco substitute may also optionally include up to about 93% by weight of a filler such as CaCO3, MgCO3, charcoal, alumina or alumina trihydrate and up to about 15% by weight monoammonium or diammonium phosphate.
  13. stinkyattic

    stinkyattic CultiModerVatorAtor

    That's an interesting piece of info, and one I have never known up until now; however if you have a need to make jabs like that, or have some issue with me, I'd rather just hear about it straight up. My email is in my sig if you have something you'd like to talk over.
  14. daihashi

    daihashi Registered+

    I feel people are looking in the wrong place. Toxicity from tobacco is very rare. You could smoke in the room (all though I don't advocate it, but I've done this myself) directly on the plants and they would be unaffected. Teas and tobacco sprays are very common and TMV would be a more wide spread issue across multiple cannabis forums if it were a true problem. That's not to say that you are not experiencing it; but it is to say that it's highly unlikely that this is your problem and it's more likely to be coincidental. Remember Occams razor? I feel that this is applicable here since your pictures have multiple symptoms occuring at once which would indicate a more common problem source; yet because of your recent use of tobacco you are trying to link it to a rare condition, TMV. Remember, often times the simplest answer is the correct answer. Since the symptoms do not match TMV, it is unlikely that it is the simplest/correct answer.

    It's like trying to push a large square peg into a small round hole.

    To be honest, and I understand you have 15 years of growing experience, but you really haven't told us very much about all the conditions surrounding your grow.

    You have multiple symptoms occuring which honestly appear more to be some sort of lockout situation; which I'm very familiar with.

    I would suggest that we restart the troubleshooting process by having you fill out the troubleshooting form.

    We now know the background of the situation.. let's fill in the rest of the technical gaps. I'm sure with the information combined a solution will be found.
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2008
  15. phatsesh101

    phatsesh101 Registered+

    well first off sorry stinky no offense there shouldve been a period not a comma. I meant it as there isnt to many who are more knowlegdable than her dankness.

    and dai brought up the fact of the sheet, good idea
    i want to see this outcome cause its new and unique
  16. stinkyattic

    stinkyattic CultiModerVatorAtor

    Phew! Ya had me worried there! I am totally intrigued by this too. It reminds me very much of a symptom I have seen commonly on Rhododendron and Azalea species, but Rhodos more often.
  17. Dreadscale

    Dreadscale Registered+


    Hi All !!!
    Just for the info not a diagnosis!!!!

    I had a similar pattern on one of my plants after I didn't water it for a bit.
    It was back in the corner and some how I neglected it. After it began to wilt
    I realised what I had done and watered it immediately. The plant came out of it and is healthy again but it still bares the scares of the neglect.
    It looks a lot like your pix in early stages.

    Just info looks like one of mine.

    GOOD LUCK :hippy:
  18. daihashi

    daihashi Registered+

    I had the exact same issue when my soil chemistry got out of whack.. My plant had all the symptoms imaginable and I was confused as hell until I realized that my soil chem was all over the place.

    There are a number of issues that could cause this. I think the tobacco is coincidental. We won't know more until he gives us the rest of the info we need.
  19. Hibbidy

    Hibbidy Registered

    Sorry, noob didnt read the stickies and missed the form

    E-indoor or outdoor - Indoor
    E-soil, soilless, coco, aero, or hydroponic - Soil
    E-specific medium - Potting Mix
    CSL-Soil type/brand - Fertilome
    HCL-Hydro/aero/soilless system type - NA
    SCL-Anything you have added to the soil- NA
    SCLR-Soil or slab runoff pH - 6.8
    E-Water source - Tap, 110 PPM
    E-Source water pH - 8.0
    HRT-Source water EC (if hydro) - NA
    E-Age of plant - Mothers 7 months, Clones1 9 weeks, Clones2 5 weeks
    E-Type of fertilizer - GH, EarthJuice powder
    E-Rate of application (if hydro, this is your PPM number, preferably after each component is added) - GH 600 to 1000 depending on stage/needs, EJ at 1-2 TSP in first inch of soil
    E-Lighting source and distance from plant - 1K MH in enclosed, vented hood 2-4 feet from plant tops
    E-Air temperature (both day and night if you are running a dark period) - 80 day, 70 night
    HD-Reservoir temperature - NA
    E-Air % Relative humidity - Estimated Low
    E-Lighting schedule - 12/12
    E-Type of ventilation your room has - 172CFM fan/can combo
    TR-Did you pre-soak your media in pH corrected solution? - NA

    Really appreciate the help, the situation remains essentially the same. There were some mild signs of under fertilization after flushing followed by light ferts. I plan to do the same again though on the next watering considering the possibility there could still be chemical traces as mentioned above.

    The new leaves on those that started flowering after the condition appeared are generally deformed (not always) but budding faster than the ones which were healthy at flower onset, maybe due to stress. Some of the younger clones that stretched the most on flower have just 2 or 3 branch buds below the top and no leaves or branches left at all for most of the stem. It is really bizarre looking.

    One of the boxes was stripped, cleaned, and repainted. I started some seedlings in that one and am not using any of the same equipment or going near it after handling any of the suspect plants. In the other box, I have some clones from a friend that may have been exposed but they were mite infested and still have not rooted so they look pretty rough anyway. They are using the same cloning container/pump as before which went through the dishwasher, but from what I have read, that may not have been hot enough if its TMV.

    I will try to get some better pics up this weekend now that I figured out how to take focused close up shots with this camera. I would love to rule out TMV and avoid any further shut down or sterilization steps. A twisted positive note is that this condition appears to be fatal over a relatively short period of time and from my understanding, mosaic doesn't cause death, just unhealthy growth.

    Thank you for the continued interest, this is very frustrating.
  20. stinkyattic

    stinkyattic CultiModerVatorAtor

    Okay- that 6.8 is DEFINITELY your runoff number and not the pH of the fertilizer you are putting IN?
    GH is buffered for hydro. Earth Juice is definitely acidic as well. Lockouts occur in soil when the pH is too low or too high.
    Also you are running soft water and calcium deficiency is a potential culprit. That's easy; add calmag to 250ppm before adding other nutes, and then bring your fertilizer solution pH to 6.9.
    Is there any chance that there is sodium in your water? The damage looks consistent with pH imbalance and salts buildup locking out needed nutes.

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