Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Vol.105, No.2, 431-440, 2021
Role and function of Chondrostereum purpureum in biocontrol of trees
A decay fungus, Chondrostereum purpureum (Pers. Ex Fr.) Pouzar, has been investigated in Europe, Northern America and New Zealand for its ability to decay hardwood stumps and thus prevent sprouting. The aim of these investigations has been to find an alternative to mechanical (cutting only) and chemical sprout control (cutting and applying chemicals to stumps in order to prevent sprouting). Mechanical sprout control is not an efficient option due to hardwood tree species' ability to re-sprout efficiently after cutting, and therefore management costs are high. Chemicals would be efficient but due to their harmful effects on the environment, alternatives are needed. The fungal treatment, i.e., cutting accompanied with C. purpureum inoculum is an environmentally friendly and efficient option for sprout control. This mini-review comprises the role and function of C. purpureum in biocontrol of trees: the ecology of C. purpureum, its sprout control efficacy, factors affecting sprout control efficacy, devices in biological sprout control, potential risks, and the future perspectives of biological sprout control.