Chrysanthemum white rust (CWR), caused by Puccinia horiana, is pathogenic on many Chrysanthemum spp. and close relatives, and infects commercially important florist chrysanthemum cultivars (Chrysanthemum × morifolium) throughout the world. Due to regulations, most research and observations with CWR are done in vitro with symptomatic plants. In contrast, research presented herein is based on microscopic examination of symptomatic and asymptomatic plants collected from natural outbreaks in the field. We observed scattered (not in a linear pattern) telial sori on infected chrysanthemum leaves, stems, and flowers that coalesced at high infection levels. Teliospores were mainly two-celled but occasionally one- or three-celled. Promycelia arose from the apical teliospore cell, the basal cell, or both. The number of basidiospores on promycelia varied from one to four. Germ tubes, arising from P. horiana basidiospores, penetrated the host epidermis directly without appressoria. A mucilaginous exudate formed at the site of attachment and penetration of leaf and stem tissue, as well as on internal cell walls. P. horiana colonization was systemic, with intercellular mycelium and intracellular M-haustoria in both symptomatic and asymptomatic infected host tissue. Hyphal anastomosis was observed within infected plants, suggesting that asexual fusion between different P. horiana pathotypes or genotypes might occur.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Agronomy and Crop Science
- Plant Science