Australasian Plant Pathology

, Volume 47, Issue 4, pp 431–447 | Cite as

Three Ganoderma species, including Ganoderma dunense sp. nov., associated with dying Acacia cyclops trees in South Africa

  • J. M. Tchotet Tchoumi
  • M. P. A. Coetzee
  • M. Rajchenberg
  • M. J. Wingfield
  • J. RouxEmail author
Original Paper


Large numbers of Acacia cyclops trees are dying along the coastal plains of the Eastern and Western Cape Provinces of South Africa. The cause of the deaths has been attributed to a root and butt rot disease caused by the basidiomycete fungus Pseudolagarobasidium acaciicola. However, many signs (e.g. basidiomes) and symptoms reminiscent of Ganoderma root-rot are commonly associated with the dying trees. In this study, isolates collected from basidiomes resembling species of Ganoderma, as well as from root and butt samples from diseased A. cyclops trees were subjected to DNA sequencing and morphological studies to facilitate their identification. Multi-locus phylogenetic analyses and morphological characterisation revealed that three species of Ganoderma are associated with dying A. cyclops trees. These included G. destructans, a recently described species causing root-rot on trees elsewhere in South Africa. The remaining two were novel species, one of which is described here as G. dunense. The novel species is distinguished by its mucronate basidiomes, laccate shiny pileus surface, duplex context and ovoid basidiospores. Only an immature specimen was available for the second species and a name was consequently not provided for it. Interestingly, only a single isolate representing P. acaciicola was recovered in this study, suggesting that further investigations are needed to ascertain the role of each of the four basidiomycetous root-rot fungi in the death of A. cyclops trees.


Ganodermataceae Phylogeny Pseudolagarobasidium Taxonomy Rooikrans Root rot 



We thank the Department of Science and Technology (DST), the National Research Foundation (NRF) and the International Cooperation Program (MINCYT-Argentina – DST-South Africa, SA/10/02) for funding.


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Copyright information

© Australasian Plant Pathology Society Inc. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry, Genetics and Microbiology, Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI), Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences (NAS)University of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.Centro de Investigacion y Estension Forestal Andino PatagonicoEsquelArgentina
  3. 3.Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI), Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences (NAS)University of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa

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