First report of leaf and sheath spot caused by Waitea circinata var. zeae on Paspalum vaginatum and Zoysia tenuifolia in China.
Waitea circinata var. zeae was previously reported as the causal agent of leaf and sheath spot on Festuca arundinacea and Panicum tennesseense in the USA. In late May to mid-September 2013, a disease resembling leaf and sheath spot was observed on Paspalum vaginatum in fairways from several golf courses in Hainan Province, China. Affected plants initially had large yellow and brown spots on leaves and sheathes, then the whole plant turned yellowish-brown and eventually died. The same symptoms were also observed on a lawn established with Zoysia tenuifolia in Hainan University. Based on morphological characteristics, sequence analysis of the rDNA internal transcribed spacer region and pathogenicity tests, the causal agent was identified as W. circinata var. zeae. This is thought to be the first report of W. circinata var. zeae infecting P. vaginatum and Z. tenuifolia in China.