The objective of this study was to investigate the role of the oomycete Phytophthora × cambivora in the decline affecting European beech (Fagus sylvatica) in the Nebrodi Regional Park (Sicily, southern Italy). In a survey of a beech forest stand in the heart of the park, Phytophthora × cambivora was the sole Phytophthora species recovered from the rhizosphere soil and fine roots of trees. Both A1 and A2 mating type isolates were found. Direct isolation from the stem bark of trees showing severe decline symptoms and bleeding stem cankers yielded exclusively P. gonapodyides, usually considered as an opportunistic pathogen. The mean inoculum density of P. × cambivora in the rhizosphere soil, as determined using the soil dilution plating method and expressed in terms of colony forming units (cfus) per gm of soil, the isolation frequency using leaf baiting, and the percentage of infected fibrous roots from 20 randomly selected beech trees with severe decline symptoms (50 to 100 foliage transparency classes) were 31.7 cfus, 80%, and 48.6%, respectively. These were significantly higher than the corresponding mean values of 20 asymptomatic or slightly declining trees, suggesting P. × cambivora is a major factor responsible for the decline in the surveyed stand.

Phytophthora × cambivora as a Major Factor Inciting the Decline of European Beech in a Stand within the Southernmost Limit of Its Natural Range in Europe

Aloi, F.;Pane, A.;Cacciola, S. O.
2022-01-01

Abstract

The objective of this study was to investigate the role of the oomycete Phytophthora × cambivora in the decline affecting European beech (Fagus sylvatica) in the Nebrodi Regional Park (Sicily, southern Italy). In a survey of a beech forest stand in the heart of the park, Phytophthora × cambivora was the sole Phytophthora species recovered from the rhizosphere soil and fine roots of trees. Both A1 and A2 mating type isolates were found. Direct isolation from the stem bark of trees showing severe decline symptoms and bleeding stem cankers yielded exclusively P. gonapodyides, usually considered as an opportunistic pathogen. The mean inoculum density of P. × cambivora in the rhizosphere soil, as determined using the soil dilution plating method and expressed in terms of colony forming units (cfus) per gm of soil, the isolation frequency using leaf baiting, and the percentage of infected fibrous roots from 20 randomly selected beech trees with severe decline symptoms (50 to 100 foliage transparency classes) were 31.7 cfus, 80%, and 48.6%, respectively. These were significantly higher than the corresponding mean values of 20 asymptomatic or slightly declining trees, suggesting P. × cambivora is a major factor responsible for the decline in the surveyed stand.
Cox I; Fagus sylvatica; ITS; Phytophthora gonapodyides; bleeding cankers; leaf-baiting; mating type; nature reserve; phylogenetic analysis; root rot.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/544643
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