Previous View
APSnet Home
Plant Disease Home



Postharvest Decay of Cantaloupe Caused by Epicoccum nigrum. B. D. Bruton, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Lane, OK 74555. S. C. Redlin, J. K. Collins, and C. E. Sams. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Beltsville, MD 20705; U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Lane, OK 74555; and Department of Plant & Soil Science, University of Tennessee, Knoxville 37901. Plant Dis. 77:1060-1062. Accepted for publication 27 May 1993. This article is in the public domain and not copyrightable. It may be freely reprinted with customary crediting of the source. The American Phytopathological Society, 1993. DOI: 10.1094/PD-77-1060.

A decay causing red discoloration in cantaloupe fruit was observed in postharvest storage studies and on occasion has been involved in load rejection of melons grown in southeastern Oklahoma. Epicoccum nigrum was consistently isolated from areas showing the red discoloration. The fungus was also pathogenic on fruit of cucumber, tomato, apple, and pear. Comparison of the cantaloupe isolate of E. nigrum with isolates from Pennisetum flaccidum and Pisum sativum indicated that all were similar if not identical, based on host range and decay characteristics on the previously mentioned fruit. Light and scanning electron microscopy revealed that sporodochia and conidia were typical of E. nigrum. Radial growth was greatest on potato-dextrose agar at 20 C and limited at 1, 5, and 30 C. The fungus remained viable in screw-cap culture tubes of soilless medium (potting mix) for 4 yr at about 20 C. A proposed common name for the disease is red rot.