Investigation into the Occurrence of Esca-Associated Fungi in Cuttings and Bench-Grafted Vines

Alessandro Zanzotto, Michele Borgo, Salvatorica Serra, Wanja Viel


Rootstocks, scions, certified virus-free grafted plants and 1-year old plants were studied to determine the
incidence of wood discoloration and the occurrence of fungi associated with esca. On cuttings very little discoloration
was observed and fungal infection was negligible. The majority of grafts and vines showed blackening and harboured
a variety of fungi, mainly Phaeoacremonium spp., with Phaeomoniella chlamydospora in second place. The presence
of these fungi as endophytes requires further investigation to determine the conditions under which they become
pathogenic and to determine when contamination of vine material occurs during nursery operations.

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