Puccinia calcitrapae

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2-celled teliospores of Puccinia calcitrapae var. centaureae (click on image to enlarge it)
Author: Kevin Ong, Texas AgriLife Extension Service
Source: IPM Images
symptoms of infection by Puccinia calcitrapae var. centaureae (click on image to enlarge it)
Author: Kevin Ong, Texas AgriLife Extension Service
Source: IPM Images

Puccinia calcitrapae DC. 1805

This species of rust fungi infects Arctium, Carduus, Centaurea calcitrapa and related plants. Of special importance is:

Puccinia calcitrapae var. centaureae (DC.) Cummins 1977 (synonym Puccinia carthami)

This variety is widely distributed and causes a rust disease of safflower (Carthamus tinctorius). Teliospores are the overwintering stage and may contaminate seeds. Germinating teliospores form basidiospores in the spring which often infect safflower seedlings, forming pycnia and later whitish aecia. Safflower seedlings often die as a result of such infections.

Wind-dispersed aeciospores result in new infections which lead to the formation of reddish-brown uredinia and urediniospores. These can create new disease cycles during the summer. Eventually dark brown to black telia and teliospores are produced in autumn.