Ok, I know this isn't a human virus, but the article was funny enough, and interesting enough to merit a post. Apparently, the Sugar Caine Mosaic Virus, something that has not been seen in Florida for more than 50 years, is coming back with a vengeance in particular communities throughout the Southeastern state.
Apparently 85 percent of the lawns in some communities within Boynton beach are being affected by the mosaic virus, and county officials like the head of pest control in Delray Beach are comparing the grass' viral demise to that of Influenza affecting humans.
Overall, they have noticed a seasonal pattern of the viral infection for the grass, seeing the death of the grass occur in the fall for the past two years. This virus affects certain strains of St. Augustine grass. Apparently, just like there are ways to prevent transmission of viruses to humans, there are ways to prevent the transmission to grass! Cleaning your lawn equipment before cutting different lawns can prevent the transmission of the virus between lawns. Furthermore, watering the infected grass will not solve the problem, but it actually may make it worse.
Unfortunately, there are no grass vaccines being developed, and no antiviral medications to provide the poor blades residing in your front yard, so prevention is key to stopping this epidemic! So remember Floridians, always practice safe lawn cutting techniques to prevent Sugarcaine Mosaic Virus from infecting your grass.
- Marcus Munoz