Identification and Characterization of Fungal Pathogens Associated with Boxwood Diseases in the Republic of Korea
Keywords:boxwood, Macrophoma leaf spot, Neofusicoccum buxi, Pseudonectria spp., Volutella blight
AbstractBoxwood is a representative ornamental shrub that is widely used in landscaping horticulture. After pruning, damaged leaves or stems of boxwoods are unavoidably vulnerable to infection by various plant pathogens. Several boxwood diseases caused by fungi, such as Volutella blight and Macrophoma leaf spot, have been reported worldwide including Republic of Korea. In this study, we isolated and identified fungal pathogens of boxwood diseases that occurred in Korea and characterized their morphological and taxonomic characteristics. Boxwood samples showing blight symptoms were collected in Seoul, Republic of Korea, and the putative fungal pathogens Pseudonectria buxi, P. foliicola, and Neofusicoccum buxi were successfully identified. Investigation of the morphological features of the field isolates, including mycelial growth and conidial morphology, and phylogenetic analysis of multiple DNA barcode loci revealed that there were some morphological and genetic variations among isolates, but all of the analyzed isolates were closely related to the corresponding reference strains. We also found that P. foliicola strains were more virulent than P. buxi, and the N. buxi strains isolated in this study were weak pathogens or saprophytes. The results of our study will contribute to the development of control strategies for boxwood diseases caused by fungi and accelerate research on the complex ecology of boxwood diseases.
How to Cite
Soobin Shin1, Jung-Eun Kim2,*, Hokyoung Son1,2,*. (2022). Identification and Characterization of Fungal Pathogens Associated with Boxwood Diseases in the Republic of Korea. The Plant Pathology Journal, 38(4). Retrieved from https://ppj-online.org/index.php/PPJ/article/view/1026