Current issue: 54(2)
Under compilation: 54(3)
Department of plant pathology of University of Helsinki conducted studies in the surrounding forests of Viikki test farm and on the Hyytiälä forest training station to find about occurrence and spore production of pine needle rust.
The damages have been minor. Most often the infection did not cause yellowing of the needles, only individual needles might have dried up. There were no dead young trees.
The spore production was strongest at the more fertile sites, with abundant occurrence of cow-wheat (Melanpyrum spp.). The infection caused more harm on the cow-wheat than on the pines. In many cases the foliage died prematurely. Melanpyrum spp. were more strongly infected on sites with more light. However, there was no difference found with the fertility of the site.
The PDF contains a summary in Finnish.
Fomes annosus (Fr.) Cke. (now Heterobasidion annosum (s.str.)) has proved highly adaptable to varying conditions. Thus, the fungus is able to alter the pH as well as in alkalic as acid direction according to the original pH-grade. The fungus spreads mainly by basidiospores or by the sterile mycelium, but maybe also by the conidiospores. The fungus has spread through the temperate zone; in the tropical and sub-tropical zone it is found sporadically. There is a mention in the literature of at least 136 species in which it has been found. It is found in hardwoods but is most disastrous in conifers. The economic losses are considered biggest in England, Germany and Scandinavia.
The research has not been able to find a safe way to protect the trees growing on an infected site. The only way to limit the damage seems to be the use of mixed stands. Stump-protection has proved to be a relatively effective way to prevent the spread of the fungus to uninfected sites. The formerly used creosote has been mainly substituted by new chemicals, such as sodium nitrite. They act by altering the stump in a way that is favourable for antagonists to Fomes annosus, such as Trichoderma viride and Penicillium sp., or the recently presented Peniophora gigantea.
Although the fungus is found in many tree species, there is a difference in the relative resistance of different species. Among the conifers, the Abies-species (with exception of Abies grandis, A. alba and A. sachalienensis) are considered comparatively resistant. The species of Larix and Pseudotsuga are more resistant than those of Picea and Pinus.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
The present study deals with the occurrence of the rust, Pucciniastrum padi (Kunze & Schm.) Diet., in the shoots and cones of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) in the forest area of the training and experimental farm of Helsinki University at Viikki (60’10’ N; 25’ E). The most important task was to clarify the correlation between the occurrences of the disease in spruce and the abundance of the alternative host of the disease, bird-sherry (Prunus padus L.).
Infected shoots were encountered in a 17-year-old planted seedling stand of spruce. In this stand 8.4% of the seedlings were infected. The density of bird-cherry trees was in the stand higher than in the surrounding areas. The number of infected shoots was the greatest in those places where the density of bird-cherries was highest and already at a distance of some ten metres form the bird-cherry stands the degree of infection decreased considerably. The portion of infected cones in the whole material of this study was 19.5%.
The dependence of the frequency of disease on the abundance of bird-cherries at different distances from the spruce stand was studied by means of regression analysis. For this reason, the percentage infected cones were determined by sample plots and the abundance of bird-cherry trees from six zones (0–50, 50–100, 100–150, 150–200, 200–300, and 300–500 m) around each sample plot. The results showed that the dependence between the degree of infection of cones and the abundance of bird-cherry in the surroundings only reached the closest zone. There were also infected cones at greater distance, for instance, 200–300 m from the bird-cherries about 10% of the cones could be infected. Both the infected cones and shoots were longer than the healthy ones.
The PDF includes a summary in English.