Introduction


These pages are devoted to Botryosphaeria. Species in this genus are found in all temperate, tropical and subtropical regions of the world; apparently they are absent only from the polar regions. They occur on a wide range of monoctyledonous, dicotyledonous and gymnospermous hosts and can cause diebacks, cankers, witches’ brooms and leaf blights, or they can be endophytes. They are frequently described as weak or opportunistic pathogens that cause disease in stressed hosts, but evidence is accumulating that shows that certain strains are primary pathogens.

Although the importance of Botryosphaeria has long been recognised, the last ten years has seen increased attention paid to this genus. Naturally, this has resulted in a good deal of new information and a proliferation of species names. This information is dispersed throughout the scientific literature, and has not been gathered together in a single unit. Because of the dynamic nature of studies in this genus, especially those related to taxonomy and systematics, formally published work can soon become outdated. What is needed is an equally dynamic means of making information available. The obvious choice is through the medium of the world wide web whereby new information can be added, irrelevant or outdated details deleted and current concepts updated.

For a number of years we have been studying this genus, starting with our efforts on the species that occur on grapevines in Portugal. More recently we have extended these studies to include the species found on oaks, especially cork oak, throughout the Iberian Peninsular. As a first step towards creating a base of knowledge on the genus, the following pages contain a key to some of the most common species (and, I must add, some not so common species), illustrated descriptions of the species and specimens we have studied, and non-illustrated descriptions of species we have not studied in detail. Emphasis is on taxonomy aimed towards correct identifications, but there is room to expand and to include other data; indeed, that is our long term aim. This is an ongoing project and the information will be updated as new material and data become available. We encourage feedback and criticism. If you have any comments, suggestions or want to contribute anything, talk to me, I am always happy to hear your favourable or unfavourable comments and opinions.


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Introduction. Version 02 saved 30 March 2004
Alan J. L. Phillips, alp@fct.unl.pt
Centro de Recursos Microbiológicos, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, 2829-516 Caparica, Portugal
Page copyright © 2004 A. J. L. Phillips