The majority of phytopathogenic fungi belongs to the Ascomycetes and the Basidiomycetes.
The fungi reproduce both sexually and asexually via the production of spores. These spores may be spread long distances by air or water, or they may be soil born. Many soil-born spores, normally zoospores are capable of living saprotrophically, carrying out the first part of their lifecycle in the soil.
Fungal diseases can be controlled through the use of fungicides in agriculture, however new races of fungi often evolve that are resistant to various fungicides.