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Macrophomina phaseolina: A Soilborne Pathogen of Salicornia bigelovii in a Marine Habitat. M. E. Stanghellini, Department of Plant Pathology, University of Arizona, Tucson 85721. J. D. Mihail, S. L. Rasmussen, and B. C. Turner. Department of Plant Pathology, University of Missouri, Columbia 65211; University of Arizona, Tucson 85721; and Environmental Research Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson 85721. Plant Dis. 76:751-752. Accepted for publication 7 March 1992. Copyright 1992 The American Phytopathological Society. DOI: 10.1094/PD-76-0751.

Salicornia bigelovii, an annual halophyte found along the seacoast of Sonora, Mexico, is being evaluated as a new forage and oilseed crop for the coastal deserts of Mexico. An indigenous soilborne fungus (Macrophomina phaseolina) infected roots and caused mortality of Salicornia bigelovii in both experimental plantings and in native populations growing in an estuary. Although M. phaseolina is widely recognized as a root pathogen of agricultural crops, its presence and pathogenic activity in a marine habitat has not been reported.