Report back on host specificity testing by CABI (UK) of Puccinia lantanae

Report back on host specificity testing by CABI (UK) of Puccinia lantanae
Alan Wood
ARC-Plant Protection Research Institute, P. Bag X5017, Stellenbosch 7600, South Africa

CABI (UK) undertook the host specificity testing of the rust fungus Puccinia lantanae for introduction of this pathogen into Australia. An isolate originating from Peru that is more damaging than most was selected for testing. Additional testing of plants of interest to South Africa was opportunistically included, as previous work showed that at least some South African forms of the weed are highly susceptible to this isolate. A total of 46 plants were tested, most in the Verbenaceae but also including some from closely related plant families. Twelve of the species included were of interest to South Africa. The results indicate that the rust fungus isolate is suitable for release in both Australia and South Africa.