Low-input integrated management of tomato viruses in Hawaii

Project Overview

Project Type: Research and Education
Funds awarded in 2012: $297,296.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2015
Region: Western
State: Hawaii
Principal Investigator:
Dr. Mark Wright
University of Hawaii

Annual Reports


  • Vegetables: tomatoes


  • Education and Training: extension, farmer to farmer, on-farm/ranch research
  • Pest Management: biological control, botanical pesticides, chemical control, cultural control, disease vectors, field monitoring/scouting, genetic resistance


    Tomato production in Hawaii has been severely hampered by insect-vectored plant pathogenic viruses for decades. Varieties resistant to the historically major pathogen, Tomato Spotted Wilt Virus, have been used extensively to deal with this problem, and the industry has grown substantially in recent years. The recent advent of Tomato Yellow Curl Virus in Hawaii has set the tomato industry back to depending extensively on insecticides for virus vector management. There are currently no varieties with dual resistance to these viruses available for commercial production in Hawaii.

    This project addressed this problem through screening tomato varieties with putative dual resistance to both of the above viruses to confirm resistance under local conditions and to determine their desirability for the local industry. We also tested the effectiveness of reflective mulches to deter the insects. A combination of tolerance or resistance with low-input insect suppression techniques will provide an effective and valuable tool that will enable farmers to continue producing tomatoes in Hawaii.

    Project objectives:

    1. Evaluation of resistant varieties.
    2. Evaluate effectiveness of reflective plastic mulch to suppress insect vectors and other insect pests.
    3. Conduct economic analysis of sustainable strategies to control TSWV and TYLCV in tomato in Hawaii.
    4. Disseminate research findings to tomato growers and agricultural professionals.


    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.