Verticillium longisporum is a soil-borne fungal pathogen causing vascular wilt of Brassica crops. This study was conducted to enhance our knowledge on the host range of V. longisporum. Seven crop species (barley, oat, oilseed rape, pea, red clover, sugar beet and wheat) and five weed species (barren brome, black-grass, charlock, cleavers and scentless mayweed) all common in southern Sweden were evaluated for infection by response to V. longisporum. Oat, spring wheat, oilseed rape, scentless mayweed and charlock inoculated with V. longisporum in a greenhouse showed stunting to various degrees close to the fully ripe stage. Based on the extent of microsclerotia formation, explants were separated into four groups: for pea and wheat, 80%. The results suggest that plant species outside the Brassicaceae can act as reservoirs of V. longisporum inoculum. Soil inoculum densities in nine fields were monitored over a period of 12 months, which ranged from 1 to 48 cfu g¿1 soil. Density of microsclerotia was lowest just after harvest, reaching its maximum six months later. No significant correlation between inoculum density in soil and disease incidence on oilseed rape plants was found. However, the data suggest that a threshold of 1 cfu g¿1 soil is needed to cause disease on oilseed rape. Species identification based on microsclerotia morphology and PCR analysis showed that V. longisporum dominated in soil of seven, and V. dahliae in two of the nine fields studied.
- molecular characterization
- oilseed rape