Summary: Phenetic data on over 60 heterotrophic, Gram-negative, yellow chromogenic bacteria from plant material were collected and analysed using numerical taxonomic methods. Marker strains representing 42 taxa were included in the analyses. At similarity levels of 80% or above, eight distinct clusters were obtained, the first four of which included yellow chromogens. Cluster 1 contained isolates from green healthy leaves of and , and clusters 2 and 3 consisted of isolates from seeds and leaves of respectively. Cluster 4 contained seven subgroups and was equated with the family Enterobacteriaceae. strains from a variety of sources formed a homogeneous subgroup, readily distinguishable from authentic strains of , other representative erwiniae, and from all other enterobacteria studied. These data emphasize the heterogeneous nature of yellow-pigmented bacteria from plants, and support the inclusion of and other Erwinia species in the Enterobacteriaceae.


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