Crown gall

Crown gall is a significant plant disease globally caused by two bacterial genera: Agrobacterium and Allorhizobium, both of which belong to the Rhizobiaceae family. In grapevines the disease is characterised by the formation of galls on the crown of vines, where the main roots join the trunk, and also on roots. Galls may also form on the trunk above the soil line or on shoots and canes. Peeling and cracking of bark, as well as a gradual decline in vine vigour due to girdling and root necrosis, may occur as the disease progresses. Young vines are especially susceptible, as galls can impede water and nutrient flow, potentially resulting in vine death in severe cases. This page provides links to resources on crown gall.

What should you do if you observe crown gall-like symptoms in your vineyard?

  • Photograph and record the location of affected vines
  • For new vine plantings, contact your nursery supplier and the Vine Industry Nursery Association (VINA)
  • Log your observed symptoms using this grower information form. Note: Information reported maybe shared with the industry bodies (AWRI, Wine Australia, Australian Grape & Wine, VINA, Vinehealth Australia and state biosecurity departments) who are working together to investigate the current issue of crown gall-like symptoms but will not be revealed publicly or shared outside this group.
  • Contact the AWRI helpdesk on or 08 8313 6600 for advice on testing and identification.