J. B. Kadir,
M. Y. Wong, and
A. Nasehi, Department of Plant Protection, Faculty of Agriculture, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 UPM, Serdang, Selangor, Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
In July 2011, a severe outbreak of pod and stem blight was observed on lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus L.) plants grown in the Cameron Highlands, located in Pahang State, Malaysia. Disease incidence varied from 33 to 75% in different fields. Pods and stems exhibited withered, light brown to reddish brown necrotic areas. Sub-circular and brown lesions were produced on the leaves. These lesions varied in size, often reaching a diameter of 1 to 2 cm. After tissue death, numerous pycnidia were observed on the surface of the pod or stem. The pycnidia diameter varied from 155 to 495 μm, averaging 265.45 μm, and on the surface of the pod or stem, pycnidia were often arranged concentrically or linearly, respectively. Pycnidiospores were hyaline, 1-celled, usually straight, and rarely, slightly curved. The α-spores varied from 5.5 to 9.0 × 2.5 to 4.0 μm; averaging 7.3 × 3.5 μm. The β-spores found either alone or with pycnidiospores in pycnidia were slender, hyaline, nonseptate, and straight or curved. Size varied from 15.8 to 38.0 × 1.3 to 2.1 μm; averaging 25.86 × 1.8 μm. The colony characteristics were recorded from pure cultures grown on potato dextrose agar plates, and incubated in darkness for 7 days at 25 °C, then exposed to 16/8 h light and dark periods at 25°C for a further 14 to 21 days. Morphological characteristics of the colonies and spores on PDA matched those described for P. phaseolorum var. sojae (2). Colonies were white, compact, with wavy mycelium and stromata with pycnidia that contained abundant β-spores. Sequence analysis of the ribosomal DNA internal transcribed spacer obtained from the Malaysian isolate FM1 (GenBank Accession No. JQ514150) using primers ITS5 and ITS4 (1) aligned with deposited sequences from GenBank confirmed identity and revealed 99% to 100% DNA similarity with P. phaseolorum strains (AY577815, AF001020, HM012819, JQ936148). The isolate FM1 was used for pathogenicity testing. Five non-infected detached leaves and pods of 4-week-old lima bean were surface sterilized and inoculated by placing 10 μl of conidial suspension (106 conidia ml–1) on the surface of leaves and pods using either the wound/drop or non-wound/drop method and distilled water used as control (3). The inoculated leaves and pods were incubated at 25 °C and 98% RH, and the experiment was performed twice. Disease reactions and symptoms were evaluated after inoculation. After one week, typical symptoms of pod and stem blight appeared with formation of pycnidia on the surface of the tissues, but not on non-inoculated controls. P. phaseolorum var. sojae was consistently reisolated from symptoms. To our knowledge, this is the first report of P. phaseolorum var. sojae causing pod and stem blight of lima bean in Malaysia.
References: (1) R. Ford et al. Aust. Plant Pathol. 33:559, 2004. (2) G. L. Hartman et al. Compendium of Soybean Diseases. 4th ed. American Phytopathological Society, St. Paul, MN, 1999. (3) P. P. Than et al. Plant Pathol. 57:562, 2008.