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Quiescent Endocarpic Floral Communities in Cured Mature Peanuts from Virginia and Puerto Rico. Kenneth H. Garren, Plant Pathologist, Crops Research Division, ARS, USDA, Holland, Virginia 23391; D. Morris Porter, Professor and Assistant Professor, Department of Plant Pathology and Plant Physiology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute. Phytopathology 60:1635-1638. Accepted for publication 15 June 1970. DOI: 10.1094/Phyto-60-1635.

Without hydration, mycelium developed at some incubation temperatures from unseen interior fungi in about two-thirds of the peanut shells (Arachis hypogaea) from 1968 Virginia (VA) and Puerto Rico (PR) crops. Few fungi were found in VA and PR seed from unblemished shells. After hydration, fungi were found in 95% of seed in discolored shells and in 40% and 85%, respectively, of VA and PR seed in unblemished shells. Ten species or genera of fungi were characteristic of one or more of the eight endocarpic communities. Shell communities were more complex. Among the characteristic forms were five toxicogenic types and three peanut pathogens. The PR and VA communities each had three exclusively characteristic forms. Only two forms seemed to invade seeds from shells during hydration. Aspergillus flavus was rare in PR samples, and in VA samples was not found before hydration. After hydration, A. flavus was a characteristic form of VA-unblemished shells and seed. Though no other fungus was found in more than 20% of VA seed, A. flavus was found in up to 30% and 50%, respectively, of seed from unblemished and discolored shells. Possibly it was suppressed in discolored VA shells by competition from Fusarium spp. and Rhizopus stolonifera.

Additional keywords: Soil microbiology, ecology of fungi, Alternaria tenuis, Diplodia gossypina, microflora.