Canadian Forest Service Publications

Evaluation of Fusarium avenaceum and other fungi for potential as biological control agents of invasive Rubus species in British Columbia. 1998. Oleskevich, C.; Shamoun, S.F.; Vesonder, R.F.; Punja, Z.K. Canadian Journal of Plant Pathology 20: 12-18.

Year: 1998

Issued by: Pacific Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 5064

Language: English

Availability: Not available through the CFS (click for more information).

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Fungi were isolated from naturally infected Rubus strigosus, R. parviflorus, and R. spectabilis plants in an attempt to identify biological control agents for these invasive species in reforestation sites. Three endemic fungi, Fusarium avenaceum, Colletotrichum dematium, and a Phomopsis sp., were selected for further study after they were found to induce >50% leaf area necrosis when inoculated onto detached Rubus leaves using in vitro pathogenicity tests. However, when inoculum was applied to intact Rubus plants under shadehouse conditions, significant foliar necrosis was not observed. Inoculum production methods, amendment of inocula with adjuvants, and application of low doses of glyphosate were investigated for their effects on pathogenicity. Foliar infection was increased significantly when inoculum of F. avenaceum was grown on a rice-grain substrate and applied in combination with an organosilicone surfactant (0.4% Silwet L-77®) to R. strigosus and R. parviflorus plants. Extraction and analysis of infested rice filtrates for metabolite production showed that a single toxin, moniliformin, was present at levels of 3300 ppm. Pathogenicity of the other two fungi was not enhanced under any conditions assayed. The potential for further development of F. avenaceum as a biological control agent of weedy Rubus species is discussed.