Plant Parasites of Europe

leafminers, galls and fungi

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae Giraud, Denchev & Hood, 2009

on Silene

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae, anther smut

Silene dioica, Duin en Kruidberg

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae on anthers of Silene dioica

Silene dioica, Muiderberg: the anthers are completely destroyed

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae: spores

spores (ø 6-10 µm).

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae on Silene doica

Silene dioica, Belgium, prov.Antwerpen, Balen, Griesbroek © Carina Van Steenwinkel

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae on Silene doica

the anthers are destroyed ….

Microbotryum silenes-dioicae on Silene doica

…. but the ovary is not affected (however, note the larva of Contarinia steini below left)


the content of the anthers is transformed into a brown vinaceous mass of spores

host plants

Caryophyllaceae, narrowly monophagous

Silene dioica.


because the larva leaves the ovary intact, the negative impact on the reproductive capacity of the flower is very limited. The real damage is caused by the Contarinia.


Denchev, Giraud & Hood (2009a), Fontaine, Gladieux, Hood & Giraud (2013a), Högberg (2016a), Kruse (2019a).

Last modified 26.viii.2019