Management of root diseases of eggplant and watermelon with the application of asafoetida and seaweeds
Keywords:Seaweeds, Asafoetida, root-rot diseases, root-knot nematodes, eggplant, watermelon
Eggplant and watermelon are highly susceptible to root rotting fungi Fusarium solani, F.oxysporum, Macrophomina phaseolina and root knot nematode (Meloidogyne spp.,) causing big losses each year in Pakistan. In field experiments, application of asafoetida, a medicinal gum from Ferula assafoetida and seaweeds Spatoglossum variabile, Stokeyia indica and Melanothamnus afaqhusainii showed significant suppressive effect on root rotting fungi Fusarium solani, Macrophomina phaseolina and root knot nematode (Meloidogyne incognita) attacking watermelon and eggplant and improved plant growth in soil naturally infested with root rotting fungi and artificially infested with root knot nematode. Length of vine of watermelon, shoot length of eggplant and fresh shoot weight were higher in seaweed and asafoetida treated plants as compared to control or Topsin-M, a fungicide, treated plants. Seaweed and asafoetida treated plants also showed earlier fruiting than control or fungicide treated plants. At farmer’s field seaweed showed similar suppressive effect on F. solani and M. phaseolina and root knot nematode on water melon in soil naturally infested by these pathogens. Application of seaweed produced healthy plants and number of fruits and weight were significantly higher in seaweed and asafoetida treated plants. Asafoetida and seaweeds offer a non-chemical means of disease management.
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