How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Camellia yellow mottle virus

Camellia yellow mottle virus causes pale discoloration in camellia blossoms and leaves.


Camellia yellow mottle virus causes irregular yellow mottling of camellia leaves and whitish blotches in the blossoms. The pattern of affected plant tissue is irregular on the whole plant; some branches show symptoms, others do not. Some leaves can be almost entirely affected. Margins of discolored areas are not distinct and blur into the normal color of the plant part.

Life cycle

Camellia yellow mottle virus is spread by budding, grafting, or rooting cuttings from plants that are infected. The virus is sometimes deliberately introduced through grafting to produce leaf or flower variegation considered to be attractive. Once a plant becomes infected with virus, it usually remains infected throughout its life.


There is no cure or treatment for virus-infected plants in landscapes. If the viral variegation is not desired, then purchase camellias that have been virus-tested and found to be free of all known viruses. For more information, see Viruses.

Pale mottling of camellia leaves
Pale mottling of camellia leaves

White blotches in petals
White blotches in petals

Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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