In-vitro and glasshouse studies to assess the efficacy of Brassica residues for the reduction of potato cyst nematode infestations.

Investigation into the effects of biofumigation methods using dried mustard meal on potato cyst nematode infestations.

Year of Publication2011

Potato cyst nematodes (Globodera rostochiensis and G. pallida) are considered to be the most important pests of potatoes in the UK, causing annual losses in excess of £50 million. Management of these organisms poses a significant challenge to potato growers due to the lack of resistant varieties (particularly for G. pallida) and the threat to the limited number of chemical control measures by proposed changes in EU legislation. Consequently, there is an urgent requirement for new management methods such as biofumigation to be developed and validated. Biofumigation is a method, which essentially exploits a natural biological process to produce biocidal volatile products such as isothiocynates, thiocynates and nitriles. In vitro assays were developed to assess the effect of dried mustard meal (Brassica juncea) upon juvenile mortality and the hatching of encysted eggs of G. pallida. In this experiment, concentrations of mustard meal of 5.208 g l-1 caused a 52% increase in juvenile mortality when compared to the control. A concentration of 10.416 g l-1 resulted in 100% mortality. Cumulative nematode hatch was also significantly reduced (P<0.001) following the exposure of nematode cysts to a range of concentrations of mustard meal extract (1.302-10416 g l-1). Glasshouse experiments were conducted to examine the effects of growing and incorporating caliente mustard (Brassica juncea) on the invasion of potato roots by G. pallida. Improved maceration of caliente mustard prior to incorporation resulted in a significant reduction (P<0.001) in the number of juveniles recovered from the roots of potato plants.

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