Occurrence of leaf blotch disease (<i>Botryosphaeria</i> Sp.) in <i>Ficus religiosa</i> in Sri Lanka

  • Maharachchikumbura S
  • Adikaram N
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Abstract

This paper reports the occurrence of a leaf blotch disease in Ficus<br />religiosa in Sri Lanka. The disease first appears as small, irregular,<br />yellow specks in leaves at later stages of maturity and with time<br />the infected areas become necrotic and gradually enlarge. At advanced<br />stages the whole leaf turns yellow with brown blotches and is shed.<br />The causal agent was identified as Botryosphaeria sp. The necrotic<br />blotches are associated with erumpent fruiting bodies of the fungus,<br />ascomata. Ascomata are solitary or botryose and are found on both<br />sides of leaves. Asci are with numerous pseudoparaphyses and ascospores<br />were observed. Colony developed on water agar medium showed hyaline,<br />aseptate conidia and mature brown conidia. In the presence of leaf<br />blight caused by Glomerella cingulata, the leaf blotch symptoms appeared<br />much later, about 10-12 weeks after the new flush. The diseased leaves<br />do not last long as F. religiosa, being a deciduous species, sheds<br />leaves seasonally. However, the fallen leaves, unless eliminated,<br />may provide a good source of inoculum for infection of the new flush.<br />Commercial fungicide, BULLET 50, inhibited the in vitro growth of<br />Botryosphaeria sp. This is the first report on a blotch disease attacking<br />leaves of F. religiosa in Sri Lanka.

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Maharachchikumbura, S., & Adikaram, N. (2010). Occurrence of leaf blotch disease (Botryosphaeria Sp.) in Ficus religiosa in Sri Lanka. Ceylon Journal of Science (Biological Sciences), 38(2), 51. https://doi.org/10.4038/cjsbs.v38i2.1858

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