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Pathology of Strawberry Root Rot Caused by Ceratobasidium Species. Stephen Wilhelm, Professor of Plant Pathology, University of California, Berkeley 94720; Paul E. Nelson(2), Harold E. Thomas(3), and Harold Johnson(4). (2)Professor of Plant Pathology, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park 16802; (3)(4)Director, and Director of Research, respectively, Driscoll Strawberry Associates, Inc., Watsonville, California. Phytopathology 62:700-705. Accepted for publication 15 January 1972. DOI: 10.1094/Phyto-62-700.

Ceratobasidium sp. (Rhizoctonia fragariae) invades strawberry roots by direct penetration, and causes sloughing of the cortex and death of rootlets. Naturally infected plants of an everbearing cultivar compared under field conditions with plants free of Ceratobasidium showed reduced vigor as measured by leaf size, slow degeneration, and premature collapse. Encasement of the pathogen in sloughed, melanized cortical cells probably protects it from antagonists and insures the presence of inoculum in the root zone throughout the life of a strawberry plant.

Additional keywords: Fragaria ananassa, blackroot complex.