Review on the Management of Botryosphaeria Dieback

Botryosphaeria dieback (BD), caused by species of the Botryosphaeriaceae family, poses a significant threat to vineyards worldwide. These fungi, well adapted to various temperatures, are becoming increasingly problematic in the face of climate change, affecting vineyards and viticulture globally.

The susceptibility of grapevines to this pathology during both nursery propagation and vineyard life cycles is a major concern. Cuts and wounds suffered during the grafting process make plants highly vulnerable to infections. Over time, the chronic decline caused by these infections reduces the longevity of vineyards and affects wine quality, resulting in substantial economic losses.

Given environmental concerns and the limited effectiveness of fungicides in protecting pruning wounds, alternative strategies to combat BD are being explored. Biological control has emerged as a promising and sustainable option. However, developing an effective strategy against this complex disease, influenced by both the biology of the causal agent and host tolerance, remains a challenge.

This review aims to provide guidance for the integrated management of BD, emphasizing the limitation of infection risk, tolerant grapevine cultivars, and biological control. The review delves into the factors influencing the expression of BD-associated symptoms in grapevine cultivation, including pathogen biology, pathogenicity factors, cultivar traits, and the potential for biological control by Bacillus spp. and Trichoderma spp.

This review has been prepared by the BIOVITIS research group of the 'Institute of Grapevine and Wine Sciences (ICVV)' in collaboration with the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV) and the University of Reims Champagne-Ardenne (France).

The manuscript has recently been published in the journal Phytopathology:

C. Leal, P. Trotel-Aziz, D. Gramaje, J. Armengol, F. Fontaine. 2024. Exploring some factors conditioning the expression of Botryosphaeria dieback in grapevine for an integrated management of the disease. Phytopathology 114:21-34