Wilt or Panama Disease of Banana

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Wallace G. B.
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In Tanganyika, wilt or Panama disease of banana was found in native plots on the lower slopes of Kilimanjaro and on the plain below in August, 1951. The plan in Figure 1 shows the positions of the known affected sites in February, 1952. The elevations of the infected areas are from 2,260 ft. to 3,800 ft. above sea level. The disease was first observed as something unusual by an African Instructor of the Department of Agriculture, who reported it to the Agricultural Officer, Moshi, and to the laboratory. The similarity of the new disease to wilt was at once evident. A fungus was found to be invariably present in diseased tissue and was suspected to be Fusarium oxysporum forma cubense, the known cause of wilt; this identification was confirmed by the Director of the Commonwealth Mycological Institute, Kew, to whom cultures were sent.
East African Agricultural And Forestry Journal, XVII (No. 4), p. 166-175