The phytopathogenic actinomycete Rhodococcus fascians induces neoplastic shooty outgrowths on infected hosts. Upon R. fascians infection of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), leaves are formed with small narrow lamina and serrated margins. These symptomatic leaves exhibit reduced tissue differentiation, display more but smaller cells that do not endoreduplicate, and accumulate in the G1 phase of the cell cycle. Together, these features imply that leaf growth occurs primarily through mitotic cell division and not via cell expansion. Molecular analysis revealed that cell cycle gene expression is activated continuously throughout symptomatic leaf development, ensuring persistent mitotic cycling and inhibition of cell cycle exit. The transition at the two major cell cycle checkpoints is stimulated as a direct consequence of the R. fascians signals. The extremely reduced phenotypical response of a cyclind3;1-3 triple knockout mutant indicates that the D-type cyclin/retinoblastoma/E2F transcription factor pathway, as a major mediator of cell growth and cell cycle progression, plays a key role in symptom development and is instrumental for the sustained G1-to-S and G2-to-M transitions during symptomatic leaf growth.