Sakata Seed Sudamerica Ltda., C. P. 427, CEP - 12906-840, Bragança Paulista, SP, Brazil
L. E. A.
Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz, Universidade de São Paulo, 13418-900, Piracicaba, SP, Brazil
Powdery mildew is an important disease of melons (Cucumis melo L.) cultivated in greenhouses in Brazil. Currently, there are 5 races of Podosphaera xanthii (formerly known as Sphaerotheca fuliginea) and 2 races of Golovinomyces cichoracearum (formerly known as Erysiphe cichoracearum) described on melons worldwide, but only race 1 of P. xanthii has been reported in Brazil (1). However, typical whitish powdery fungal growth was observed on an experimental hybrid yellow melon resistant to race 1 of P. xanthii during the summer of 2000 in a greenhouse in Bragança Paulista, State of São Paulo. Conidia collected from diseased leaves were spread onto 0.5% water agar medium and maintained at 22°C for 24 h with 12 h of light and 12 h of darkness. Most of the germinated conidia displayed fibrosin inclusion bodies when observed in a solution of 3% potassium hydroxide (KOH), and approximately 1 of 50 also displayed forked germ tubes. These features allowed us to identify P. xanthii as the causal agent. Conidia raised on the susceptible yellow melon ‘Amarelo CAC’ were used to inoculate cotyledons of the differential melon lines (2) ‘Hale's Best Jumbo’ (susceptible to races 1, 2, and 3 of P. xanthii), ‘PMR-45’ (resistant to race 1 and susceptible to races 2 and 3), and ‘PMR-6’ (resistant to races 1 and 2 and susceptible to race 3). Inoculations were performed on 10 plants of each differential line and replicated four times. The presence or absence of symptoms was evaluated 18 days after inoculation. ‘Hale's Best Jumbo’ and ‘PMR-45’ were rated as susceptible while ‘PMR-6’ was rated as resistant, thus indicating the presence of race 2 of P. xanthii in Brazil. During field surveys from 2001 to 2003, this race was found on squash (Cucurbita moschata), summer squash (C. pepo), and melons in São Paulo.
References: (1) F. J. B. Reifschneider et al. Plant Dis. 69:1069, 1985. (2) C. E. Thomas et al. Cucurbit Genet. Coop. 7:126, 1984.