Since plants don't have the ability to walk around on their own, diseases need to find a way to get from one plant to another on their own. Sometimes they have to get some help and that helper is called a vector.

Due to the fact that insects are mobile and have the ability to move from plant to plant, they may become vectors of certain diseases. In most cases, insect vectors fall into the category of sucking insects. These critters draw sap from one plant and them move on to another. Their mouth parts may be contaminated with bacteria or virus which is then injected into the next plant.

The most common insect vectors would include aphids and leafhoppers with whiteflies, mealybugs, grasshoppers, spider mites and rarely beetles occasionally acting as vectors too.

Note: We have provided some general information and observations on this topic aimed at the home gardener. Before you take any serious action in your landscape, check with your state's land grant university's Cooperative Extension Service for the most current, appropriate, localized recommendations.

Types of Insects

"Name That Bug Page"

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