Verticillium wilt of ailanthus altissima: Susceptibility of associated tree species

Mark J. Schall, Donald D. Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Verticillium albo-atrum causes unprecedented wilt and mortality of the invasive tree-of-heaven (Ailanthus altissima) within forests of south-central Pennsylvania. Stem, inoculation of potted Ailanthus seedlings in the greenhouse and canopy Ailanthus trees in the field with V. albo-atrum resulted in 100% mortality. Stem, inoculation of understory striped maple saplings in the field also resulted, in 100% mortality. However, the high susceptibility of striped maple was not observed in naturally infected stands, where only 1% of striped maple saplings exhibited Verticillium wilt. Inoculation of chestnut oak, northern red oak, red maple, sugar maple, white ash, and yellow-poplar seedlings or canopy trees with V. albo-atrum did not induce wilt symptoms. NonAilanthus tree species growing adjacent to dead and dying Ailanthus trees in the field were asymptomatic. Pending further studies, V. albo-atrum should be considered as a potential biocontrol agent for invasive Ailanthus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1158-1162
Number of pages5
JournalPlant disease
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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