Some taxa in Aplosporellaceae are recorded as plant pathogens. Aplosporella prunicola was recorded as a probable tree pathogen on gymnosperms (Aylward et al. 2017). Aplosporella beaumontiana was recorded as a major pathogen associated with a disease of okra (Yan et al. 2018).
Botryosphaeriaceae comprises a diverse range of taxa that are pathogens, endophytes or saprobes on a wide range of hosts including dicotyledonous monocotyledonous, and gymnosperms (Schoeneweiss 1981; Manawasinghe et al. 2016). Their distribution is vast, covering all geographic and climatic regions, except Polar Regions (Crous et al. 2007c; Rodas et al. 2009; Wunderlich et al. 2011; Manawasinghe et al. 2016). At present, their ecological role as phytopathogens has gained a great attention (Manawasinghe et al. 2016). The pathogenic taxa in Botryosphaeriaceae caus several important diseases such as leaf spots, cankers, dieback, fruit rot, gummosis and even plant death on many economically important crops (Rodas et al. 2009, Hyde et al. 2014). Some species are pathogenic on many hosts (Diplodia seriata, Lasiodiplodia spp., and Neofusicoccum parvum) in the same geographic area. Pathogenicity of some taxa (e.g. B. dothidea) varies with the country for the same host species (Chen et al. 2014; Netto et al. 2014; Li et al. 2015; Linaldeddu et al. 2015). The pathogenic fungal taxa of this family are recognized as “opportunistic plant fungal pathogens” (Chethana et al. 2016). It is not clear whether changes in the environment triggers pathogenicity or if disease development is due to weakening of the host defenses (Chethana et al. 2016; Manawasinghe et al., 2016). Since phytopathogenic botryosphaeriaceous taxa also have an endophytic lifestyle they may act as latent pathogens. Some species in this family have been reported as human pathogens (Polizzi et al. 2009 2011; Phillips et al. 2013).
The ecology and distribution of Melanops is poorly known. Although its appearance is similar to other Botryosphaeriales, it is not clear whether it is pathogenic or endophytic (Slippers et al. 2013).
Phyllosticta species have globally been recorded as endophytes, plant pathogens and saprobes from economically and ecologically important plant hosts. Some cause important diseases such as Citrus black spot and tan spot, subjected to phyto-sanitary legislation in the European Union and the USA. Further leaf- and fruit-spotting disease of Musa spp. (freckle disease), leaf spots in turmeric, cashew, ginger, orchids and black rot of grapes diseases are also caused by Phyllosticta species.
Members in this family usually grow on living or dead leaves or on stems of various plants, and are mostly saprobes, but some species are pathogens such as Kellermania agaves, and Mycosphaerellopsis moravica (Petrak 1921b; Barr 1996; Ramaley 1993, 1995, 1998; Minnis et al. 2012; Crous et al. 2013b). Most species inhabit Asparagaceae.
Saccharataceae has previously been known only from southern Africa, and is most diverse on Proteaceae. Research has shown, however, that it has also been introduced as an endophyte into other countries where South African Proteaceae are now cultivated (Marincowitz et al. 2008). This plant family, which has a high endemic richness in southern Africa, has evolved in the region for more than 100 million years (Barker et al. 2007). This date allows for the estimated 57 (28–100) mya (based on rDNA SSU) separation of the Saccharataceae as a family and to have evolved with these endemic plant hosts in the region. The species are typically associated with leaf spots and stem cankers and they appear to be pathogens. Separate studies have also shown that they are endophytes (Swart et al. 2000, Taylor et al. 2001a), similar to members of the Botryosphaeriaceae.