Estimating the germination dynamics of Plasmopara viticola oospores using the hydro-thermal time

Vittorio Rossi, Tito Caffi, R. Bugiani, F. Spanna, D. Della Valle

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24 Citations (Scopus)


The effects of environmental conditions on the variability in germination dynamics of Plasmopara viticola oospores were studied from 1999 to 2003. The germination course was determined indirectly as the relative infection incidence (RII) occurring on grape leaf discs kept in contact with oospores sampled from a vineyard between March and July. The time elapsed between 1 January and the infection occurrence was expressed as physiological time, using four methods: (i) sums of daily temperatures > 8 ° C; (ii) hourly temperatures > 10 ° C; (iii) sums of hourly rates from a temperature-dependent function; or (iv) sums of these rates in hours with a rain or vapour pressure deficit ≤ 4·5 hPa (hydro-thermal time, HT). An equation of Gompertz in the form RII = exp[ − a · exp( − b · HT)] produced an accurate fit for both separate years ( R 2 = 0·97 to 0·99) and pooled data ( R 2 = 0·89), as well as a good accuracy in cross-estimating new data ( r between observed and cross-estimated data were between 0·93 and 0·99, P < 0·0001). It also accounted for a great part of the variability in oospore germination between years and both between and within sampling periods. Therefore, the equation of Gompertz (with a = 15·9 ± 2·63 and b = 0·653 ± 0·034) calculated over hydro-thermal time, a physiological time accounting for the effects of both temperature and moisture, produced a consistent modelling of the general relationships between the germination dynamics of a population of P. viticola oospores and weather conditions. It represents the relative density of the seasonal oospores that should have produced sporangia when they have experienced favourable conditions for germination
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-226
Number of pages11
JournalPlant Pathology
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Vitis vinifera
  • environmental conditions
  • grapevine downy mildew
  • modelling
  • primary inoculum

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