Phytophthora species are well-known as destructive plant pathogens, especially in natural ecosystems. It is ironic, therefore, how little is known regarding the Phytophthora diversity in South African natural woody ecosystems. In this study, Phytophthora species
were isolated using standard baiting techniques from 182 soil and water samples and these were identified based on ITS and cox I sequence data. The 171 resulting Phytophthora isolates resided in 14 taxa including six known species (P. multivora, P. capensis, P. cryptogea,
P. frigida, P. cinnamomi, P. cinnamomi var. parvispora), the known but as yet unnamed Phytophthora sp. PgChlamydo, P. sp. emzansi, and P. sp. Kununurra and five novel taxa referred to as P. sp. stellaris, P. sp. Umtamvuna P. sp. canthium,
P. sp. xWS, P. sp. xHennops. Four of the new taxa were found exclusively in water and two of these are hybrids. The most commonly isolated species from soil was P. multivora, a species recently described from Western Australia. Phytophthora frigida was isolated
for the first time from stream water. With the exception of P. cinnamomi, very little is known regarding the biology, epidemiology or origin of Phytophthora in South Africa.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 01 June 2013
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