The Q&A Archives: Sweet Pea Foliage

Question: My sweet peas, planted from seed saved from last year's plants, have "regular" sweet pea foliage, plus something that looks rather like maidenhair fern foliage....they didn't bloom this year either. Any ideas on what happened?

Answer: The symptoms you describe sound suspiciously like pea enation virus. Aphids spread the disease which causes crinkling, stunting and mottling of leaves followed by outgrowths on leaves and pods.

Because the problem can be transferred from pod peas to sweet peas to clover, you may have additional outbreaks in other plants this summer. Avoid planting these hosts, or control the aphids so they won't infect other plants.

(By the way, the seeds you saved and planted didn't cause the problem.)

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