S. Irrgang, M. Schuster, A. Blievernicht, M. Zander, Ch. Ulrichs
Proceedings of the 14th International Peat Congress
biological-control, necrotrophic-fungi, sphagnum-pathogen, tephrocybe-palustris, trichoderma-virens
Theme II. Peat for horticulture, energy and other uses
Within their natural habitats, only few diseases can be observed in Sphagnum sp. Two fungi are reported being able to cause a necrotic disease pattern in a vital Sphagnum carpet. These two are Tephrocybe palustris (PECK) and Scleroconidioma sphagnicola (CURRAH and THORMANN). To avoid damage in Sphagnum farming systems, an applicable control strategy should be developed. Although a fungicide has been identified recently, which is able to stop the growth of the mycelium, it is not the first choice for field application. For this reason, we are interested in the development of a biological control strategy. A Trichoderma virens strain was found and isolated from T. palustris fruit bodies in our greenhouse Sphagnum collection. In an antagonist assay with two T. palustris strains, the growth of T. palustris was reduced around 25% to 100% by T. virens. The antagonistic effect was related to the growth rate of the T. palustris strains and inversely proportional to the size of the mycelium. The results presented here propose T. virens as a prophylactic biocontrol agent for the necrotic disease caused by T. palustris in Sphagnum.