Endophytic and epiphytic phyllosphere fungi of Camellia japonica: seasonal and leaf age-dependent variations

Takashi Osono
Mycologia 2008, 100 (3): 387-91
Seasonal and leaf age-dependent variations in the endophytic and epiphytic phyllosphere fungal assemblages of Camellia japonica were examined and compared. Live leaves of C. japonica were collected in four seasons (May, Aug, Nov, Feb), and fungi were isolated from healthy-looking leaves of 0, 1, 2 and 3 y old. The infection rate and total number of endophytic fungi increased May-Feb, and species richness of endophytes increased as leaves aged. In contrast the infection rate of epiphytic fungi was 100% for all leaf ages at every sampling date. The total number of epiphytic fungi isolated was greatest in May and lowest in Aug. The species richness of epiphytes did not differ significantly by season or leaf age. Eight fungal species were recorded as major phyllosphere fungi of C. japonica. Seasonal variations were detected for the frequencies of Colletotrichum gloeosporioides, C. acutatum, and epiphytes Pestalotiopsis sp.1, Aureobasidium pullulans, Phoma sp.1 and Ramichloridium sp., whereas the frequency of the endophyte Geniculosporium sp.1 varied with leaf age. The frequency of the epiphyte Cladosporium cladosporioides varied with both season and leaf age.

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