Fungal Diversity

, Volume 67, Issue 1, pp 157–179 | Cite as

Botryosphaeriaceae and Diaporthaceae associated with panicle and shoot blight of pistachio in California, USA

  • Shuai Fei Chen
  • David P. Morgan
  • Themis J. Michailides


Botryosphaeria panicle and shoot blight was considered as one of the single greatest threats to the California pistachio industry in the last two decades. A large number of fungi with typical morphological characteristics of Botryosphaeriaceae and Diaporthe were collected from pistachios in 18 counties in California and deposited in our culture collection. The aims of this study were to identify these isolates, recognize the distribution of these fungal species and test their pathogenicity to pistachio cultivars. A total of 304 California isolates were identified based on comparisons of DNA sequence data of the ITS, TEF-1α and β-tubulin gene regions, and combined with the morphological features of the cultures and conidia. Research results showed that California isolates represent eight species of Botryosphaeriaceae and one species of Diaporthe. These species include Botryosphaeria dothidea, Diplodia seriata, Dothiorella iberica, Dot. sarmentorum, Lasiodiplodia citricola, L. gilanensis, Neofusicoccum mediterraneum, Neof. vitifusiforme and Diaporthe chamaeropis. Of the Botryosphaeriaceae, 86 % of the isolates were identified as Neof. mediterraneum, which distributed in all the sampled counties. On pistachio trees, in addition to isolates from California, Neof. mediterraneum from Arizona, Neof. australe from Australia, B. dothidea, Neof. parvum and Dia. viticola from Greece were also identified. Pathogenicity of the California fungi on pistachio cultivars, Kerman (female) and Peters (male), using a mycelium plug and conidial suspension inoculation methods showed that all these species are pathogenic to the two tested pistachio cultivars, with L. citricola, L. gilanensis being the most pathogenic species, followed by Neof. mediterraneum. This study represents the first comprehensive work on the species identification, distribution and pathogenicity of Botryosphaeriaceae and Diaporthe on pistachio in California.


Botryosphaeria Diaporthe Diplodia Dothiorella Lasiodiplodia Neofusicoccum Phomopsis 



This research was funded by California Pistachio Research Board. We thank the colleagues of the University of California Cooperative Extension for sending some of the diseased samples. We are also grateful to Ryan Puckett and Avery Hiley for the valuable assistance in the field inoculations, and Ms. FeiFei Liu and GuoQing Li in the China Eucalypt Research Centre (CERC) for their assistance in the sequence submission.


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Copyright information

© Mushroom Research Foundation 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Plant PathologyUniversity of California-Davis/Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension CenterParlierUSA
  2. 2.China Eucalypt Research Centre (CERC), Chinese Academy of Forestry (CAF)ZhanJiangChina

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