Collar rot on Italian alder trees in California caused by Phytophthora siskiyouensis

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Plant Health Progress, Plant Management Network (2009)



In November 2006, trees of Italian alder (Alnus cordata) were observed declining in association with bleeding trunk cankers in a commercial landscape in Foster City, CA. A species of Phytophthora was isolated on PARP selective medium from the leading edge of the cankers. The Phytophthora species was homothallic with primarily paragynous antheridia and had oospores that were mostly globose and aplerotic. Sporangia were produced from mycelia on plugs of carrot piece agar in soil extraction solution and were semi-papillate and ovoid to ellipsoid in shape. The intergenic transcribed spacer region of rDNA from an alder isolate matched with 100% identity to isolates in GenBank of Phytophthora siskiyouensis, a recently described species associated with tanoak and found in the soil and waterways of coastal Oregon. Pathogenicity was tested on young alder trees growing in pots. Pathogenicity was confirmed on Italian alder trees and potential pathogenicity was demonstrated on red and white alder trees.