Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

First report of leaf blight of taro (Colocasia esculenta) caused by Phytophthora colocasiae in Ghana.

Abstract

In May 2009, outbreaks of a destructive leaf disease were observed on several taro (Colocasia esculenta) farms in the Atiwa, East-Akim, Fanteakwa, West-Akim, and New Juaben districts of the Eastern Region of Ghana. Symptoms began on leaves as small, brown, water-soaked lesions that enlarged and coalesced into large lesions with yellow exudate, ultimately leading to the defoliation and death of plants. Symptoms were suggestive of taro leaf blight (TLB) caused by Phytophthora colocasiae. By August 2010, the disease had spread to other taro-growing regions in Ghana. On the basis of morphological characteristics and nucleotide homology, the isolates were identified as P. colocasiae. This is thought to be the first report of TLB and P. colocasiae in Ghana.