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Colonization of Aerial Peanut Pegs by Aspergillus flavus and A. niger-Group Fungi Under Field Conditions. Gary J. Griffin, Department of Plant Pathology and Physiology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, 24061; Kenneth H. Garren, Southern Region, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Tidewater Research and Continuing Education Center, Holland Station, Suffolk, Virginia 23437. Phytopathology 66:1161-1162. Accepted for publication 5 April 1976. Copyright © 1976 The American Phytopathological Society, 3340 Pilot Knob Road, St. Paul, MN 55121. All rights reserved.. DOI: 10.1094/Phyto-66-1161.

Selective media were used to isolate Aspergillus flavus and fungi of the A. niger group from aerial peanut pegs (elongating tissue at the base of developing fruit) in the field during 1973, 1974, and 1975 and from peanut flowers in 1974 and 1975. Aspergillus flavus was isolated from about 7% of washed peanut flowers in both years, but isolation frequency from terminal portions of washed aerial pegs and surface-sterilized aerial pegs over the same period was lower (1.5% and 0.3%, respectively). In 1973, A. flavus was isolated from 0.2% of surface-sterilized aerial pegs. Isolation frequency of antagonists of A. flavus in the A. niger group was lower than A. flavus on flowers and similar on aerial pegs. Low levels of colonization of peanut fruits by A. flavus via flower and aerial peg colonization appears to be possible under Virginia field conditions.

Additional keywords: Arachis hypogaea, groundnut, mycotoxins.