A serious canker disease of Eucalyptus in South Africa caused by a new species of Coniothyrium
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Eucalyptus spp. are being propagated extensively as exotics in plantations in South Africa, and many other parts of the world. In South Africa, a number of diseases result in serious losses to this resource. This paper describes a new and very damaging stem canker disease, which has recently appeared on plantation-grown eucalyptus in South Africa. The disease, first noted in an isolated location in Zululand is now common in other parts of the country, and is typified by discrete necrotic lesions on stems. These lesions coalesce to form large, gum-impregnated cankers and malformed stems. The causal agent of the disease, as inferred from pathogenicity tests, is a new species of Coniothyrium described here as C. zuluense. This fungus is a serious impediment to eucalypt propagation in South Africa, and is most likely a threat to similar forest industries elsewhere in the world.
Key wordsEucalyptus stem canker Coniothyrium zuluense tree disease South Africa
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