What's Hot at the PPDL
October 16, 2018
Boxwood blight found in Indiana
DNR Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology has discovered that a
shipment of boxwood plants infected with boxwood blight was shipped to
Indiana in May.
This is important because boxwood blight (Calonectria pseudonaviculata)
is a fungal disease that infests members of the popular Buxaceae
family, and is often transported through the nursery trade. Hosts
include Buxus (boxwood), Pachysandra (Japanese spurge) and Sarcococca
total, 23 stores in Indiana received infected material in early spring
(particularly “Graham Blandy” cultivar), and it’s possible that members
of the public inadvertently purchased some plants.
fungus, which can lay dormant in drier conditions, can be found on all
above-ground portions of the plant and presents itself as dark leaf
spots. It causes rapid defoliation, which typically starts on the bottom
of the plant and moves toward the top. This fungal pathogen can move
through sporulation in water and from dropped leaves. As a result,
infection can spread to surrounding plants from a single infected plant.
you suspect one of your plants shows signs and symptoms of boxwood
blight, please call (866) NO EXOTIC (866-663-9684) use the information
For more information on this pathogen see the following link extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/BP/BP-203-W.pdf
DNR inspector found the plants at a national chain home and garden store
in early October. The shipment originated at a nursery in Oregon. It
was also sent to stores in 11 other states.
Upon confirmation of boxwood blight on these plants by the Purdue Plant and Pest Diagnostic Lab,
the DNR required that the chain remove all boxwood from their shelves
for disposal and that the stores mitigate the area through disinfection
to ensure that the pathogen is no longer present and able to infect
further shipments of plants.
DNR is currently surveying for boxwood blight in Indiana. To date, the
DNR has not found the pathogen, except for a few interceptions like this
To view all DNR news releases, please see dnr.IN.gov.
Media contact: Megan Abraham, DNR Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology, 317-232-4189, mabraham@dnr.IN.gov.