Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Cocoa white thread (015)

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  • Worldwide distribution. In wet tropics. On cocoa and many other trees and shrubs. An important disease when cultural control operations are not done routinely.
  • Fungal threads grow along branches, onto leaf stalks and blades, killing the leaves, which remain hanging in place attached by the threads.
  • White toadstools occur occasionally in wet weather.
  • Spread is by spores, and branches falling from shade trees onto cocoa beneath.
  • Cultural control: prune out infected branches, along with the leaves, remove from the plantation, and burn them. Make regular 3-monthly inspections.
  • Chemical control: none recommended.
Common Name

White thread

Scientific Name

Marasmiellus (Marasmius) scandens

AUTHORS Helen Tsatsia & Grahame Jackson
Information from CABI (2020) Marasmiellus scandens (white thread blight). Crop Protection Compendium. (; CABI (undated) Plantwise Knowledge Bank. (; and from Amoako-Attah L, et al. (2016) White thread blight disease caused by Marasmiellus scandens (Massee) Dennis & Reid on cocoa and its control in Ghana. African Journal of Agricultural Research 11(50): 5064-5070. (

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project PC/2010/090: Strengthening integrated crop management research in the Pacific Islands in support of sustainable intensification of high-value crop production, implemented by the University of Queensland and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community.

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