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Summary Five-year-old seedlings of Pinus nigra, Pinus brutia, Abies nordmanniana ssp. bornmülleriana and Cedrus libani, 3-year-old seedlings of Pinus sylvestris, and 2-year-old seedlings of Juniperus excelsa were inoculated on the lower stem with Turkish Heterobasidion abietinum and Heterobasidion annosum s.s. isolates. In total, 300 seedlings were inoculated in April 2007 with five isolates of each Heterobasidion species and incubated in a glasshouse for 12 weeks. The daily maximum temperature increased gradually from 13°C to 31°C by the end of the incubation period. Infection incidence, mortality, lesion length in the inner bark and fungal growth in the xylem were examined. For H. abietinum, infection incidence ranged from 0% to 36%, and for H. annosum s.s. from 0% to 60%. Mortality was low; only 1% of the inoculated seedlings died. Mean lesion lengths varied between 7.6 and 11.9 mm for H. abietinum and 8.0 and 15.7 for H. annosum s.s. in all species apart from C. libani, in which the corresponding values were 42.2 and 42.6 mm respectively. Similarly, mean fungal growth in sapwood of C. libani was approximately 25 mm for both Heterobasidion species, in contrast to 0–3.2 mm in the other tree species. The H. abietinum isolates were not reisolated from P. nigra, P. sylvestris or J. excelsa. The H. annosum s.s. isolates did not infect Abies seedlings. Only P. brutia and C. libani were susceptible to both pathogens. Control seedlings showed no symptoms. The results indicated that C. libani is highly susceptible to Turkish isolates of Heterobasidion.