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Last Updated: Thursday, 10 January 2008, 17:47 GMT
First case of deadly plant fungus
Rhododendron
Rhododendron plants in Argyll were found with the deadly disease
A deadly plant disease has been discovered in Scotland for the first time, experts have said.

Phytophthora kernoviae, a fungus-like pathogen, has been found on two Rhododendron plants in a private garden in Argyll.

It was first discovered in the south-west of England in 2003.

A Scottish Government spokesman said the Forestry Commission will destroy the infected plants to prevent the disease spreading.

The disease acts in a similar way to Phytophthora ramorum, known as Sudden Oak Death in the USA, which has previously been found in four gardens in Scotland.

The pathogen causes bleeding bark cankers which can girdle and kill affected trees.

It also causes leaf blights on a range of shrubs, particularly Rhododendron, as well as some trees.

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