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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Frederick, Maryland » Foreign Disease-Weed Science Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #392978

Research Project: Identification, Biology, Epidemiology, and Control of Foreign and Emerging Fungal Plant Pathogens

Location: Foreign Disease-Weed Science Research

Title: The epidemic since 2020: new insights into management of boxwood blight

item Shishkoff, Nina

Submitted to: APS Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/13/2022
Publication Date: 12/26/2022
Citation: Shishkoff, N. 2022. The epidemic since 2020: new insights into management of boxwood blight. APS Annual Meeting. 112-11-S3.1.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Boxwood is an important woody ornamental in the U.S., both historically and as a commercial crop today. The estimated total economic contribution of the green industry was $348 billion in 2018, with boxwood among the most profitable plants. However, U.S. boxwood is currently threatened by a serious disease, boxwood blight, caused by the invasive pathogen Calonectria pseudonaviculata. The pathogen was first observed in Connecticut and North Carolina in 2011 and has now been reported from 31 states as well as Canada. A second species infecting boxwood, C. henricotiae, is present in Europe and may be more virulent and tolerant to fungicides. This special session will present the most recent information on managing this disease. Boxwood blight is spread through the movement of plants in nurseries, therefore symptoms and spread need to be understood in the nursery setting. Environmental factors also need to be taken into account to evaluate risk to different growing regions. New tools are available for diagnosis and research into chemical and cultural controls has allowed the development of integrated management approaches. Scientists and industry partners are working together within the Boxwood Blight Insight Group since 2020 to provide a nation-wide plan to protect a plant cherished since its introduction to America in the mid-1600s.