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Bioherbicidal potential of a strain of Xanthomonas spp. for control of common cocklebur (Xanthium strumarium)

C. Douglas Boyette, Robert E. Hoagland
Biocontrol science and technology 2013 v.23 no.2 pp. 183-196
Ambrosia trifida, Conyza canadensis, Xanthium strumarium, Xanthomonas, biological control, disease course, herbicide resistance, herbicides, host range, leaf spot, leaves, pathogens, pesticidal properties, seedlings, virulence, weed control, weeds, Arkansas, Mississippi
Several isolates of a previously unreported bacterial pathogen were discovered on common cocklebur seedlings in Chicot County, AR and Washington County, MS. Diseased plants in nature exhibited angular-shaped leaf spotting symptoms on leaf margins and central leaf areas. The isolates were cultured from diseased leaf tissue and tentatively identified as Xanthomonas spp., and their virulence on common cocklebur seedlings compared. The most virulent isolate (LVA987) was used in studies to define disease progression on cocklebur seedlings and to carry out a host range evaluation on various weeds and crop plants. High virulence was found on common cocklebur > marestail (Conyza canadensis) > giant ragweed (Ambrosia trifida) ≥ and common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisifolia). These results suggest this pathogen may be useful for the biological control of these important species of weeds. This is also highly relevant since all of these weeds have evolved resistance to one or more synthetic herbicides and are thus becoming more difficult to control with conventional herbicides.