The Norwegian Crop Research Institute, Plant Protection Centre, Høgskoleveien 7, 1432 Ås
Agricultural University of Norway, Department of Chemistry and Biotechnology, P.O. Box 5040, 1432 Ås, Norway
Anthracnose caused by Colletotrichum acutatum J. H. Simmonds was detected in strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa Duch.) for the first time in Norway in 1999. Symptoms were found in greenhouse grown strawberries in the cultivar Korona. Symptoms were typical of strawberry anthracnose: sunken, brown, and firm lesions appeared on maturing fruits. Masses of conidia were produced in acervuli in the center of lesions. The fungus was isolated on acidified potato dextrose agar. Colonies grown on potato dextrose agar (PDA) were pale to mouse gray and became dark greenish to blackish in reverse. Conidia were formed in orange to salmon pink masses in the center of the culture. Conidia in cultures were 16.5 (13.8 to 18.8) × 4.5 (3.8 to 5) μm, and were hyaline, cylindrical, with pointed ends, and aseptate. Setae were never observed in culture or on fruits. The fungus did not form an ascigerous stage in culture. Mycelial growth rate at 25 to 26°C on PDA was 8.1 to 8.4 mm per day. Morphological characters and growth rate were in accordance with previous reports on C. acutatum (1,2). The isolated fungus was confirmed to be C. acutatum by both the International Mycological Institute, Egham, England, and Centraalbureau voor Schimmelcultures, Baarn, the Netherlands. Koch's postulates were fulfilled by inoculating ripe and unripe fruits on strawberry plants with the isolated fungus. Fruits were either sprayed with a conidial suspension (106 conidia per ml) or slightly wounded with a needle that had been dipped in a conidial mass from a pure culture of C. acutatum. Symptoms appeared after 4 days at 20°C, and after 5 days, brown, sunken, circular lesions reached a size of 1 cm in diameter on wounded, ripe fruits. In unripe fruits the lesions developed more slowly, and in unwounded fruits sprayed with a conidial suspension, large, irregular spots developed. Leaves were inoculated by placing a small block of agar at the base of petioles on intact strawberry plants. The tissue underneath the agar was either unwounded or slightly wounded with a needle. After 20 days (at 20 to 25°C) some necrosis developed on both unwounded and wounded petioles. No symptoms were observed in the crown tissue where the inoculated petioles were attached. The fungus was readily reisolated from both fruits and petioles, after which typical morphological characters developed in culture as described above.
References: (1) P. S. Gunnell and W. D. Gubler. Mycologia 84:157, 1992. (2) B. J. Smith and L. L. Black. Plant Dis. 74:69, 1990.