This study was conducted to investigate the Alternaria species associated with leaf spot of date palm and wheat in Oman. Out of 98 date palm leaf samples and 146 wheat leaf samples, Alternaria was isolated from 27 and 23% of the samples developing leaf spot symptoms, respectively. Identification of Alternaria isolates using sequences of the internal transcribed spacer region of the ribosomal RNA (ITS rRNA), glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GPDH), translation elongation factor (TEF) and RNA polymerase II subunit (RPB2) genes, showed that the isolates belong to seven Alternaria species or species complexes. A. burnsii - A. tomato and A. arborescens species complexes (58 and 4%, respectively) and A. alternata (38%) were the species recovered from the symptomatic date palm leaves. A. alternata (67%), A. burnsii - A. tomato species complex (15%), A. jacinthicola (3%), A. ventricosa (3%), A. slovaca (6%) and Alternaria caespitosa (6%) were isolated from wheat. Pathogenicity test showed that tested isolates of A. alternata (DPM19, WDK12), A. burnsii - A. tomato species complex (DPM31), A. jacinthicola (WBR4) and A. slovaca (WDK9, WDK7) were pathogenic on date palm, while A. alternata (DPM19, WDK12), A. burnsii - A. tomato species complex (DPM31, WDK11) and A. slovaca (WDK9, WDK7) were pathogenic on wheat. This is the first report of date palm and wheat as new hosts for A. burnsii - A. tomato species complex and the first reports of A. burnsii - A. tomato species complex, A. caespitosa A. slovaca, and A. ventricosa in Oman. The study shows that several species of Alternaria are associated with leaf spot in date palm and wheat in Oman, with some isolates having the ability to cause infection in both hosts.
ASJC Scopus subject areas