Field experiments were conducted in Maryland to investigate the influence of sunn hemp cover cropping in conjunction with organic and synthetic fertilizers on the nematode community in a zucchini cropping system. Two field treatments, zucchini planted into a sunn hemp living and surface mulch (SH) and zucchini planted into bare-ground (BG) were established during three field seasons from 2009 to 2011. In 2009, although SH slightly increased nematode richness compared with BG by the first harvest (P < 0.10), it reduced nematode diversity and enrichment indices (P < 0.01 and P < 0.10, respectively) and increased the channel index (P < 0.01) compared to BG at the final harvest. This suggests a negative impact of SH on nematode community structure. The experiment was modified in 2010 and 2011 where the SH and BG main plots were further split into two subplots to investigate the added influence of an organic vs. synthetic fertilizer. In 2010, when used as a living and surface mulch in a no-till system, SH increased bacterivorous, fungivorous, and total nematodes (P < 0.05) by the final zucchini harvest, but fertilizer type did not influence nematode community structure. In 2011, when incorporated into the soil before zucchini planting, SH increased the abundance of bacterivorous and fungivorous nematodes early in the cropping season. SH increased species richness also at the end of the season (P < 0.05). Fertilizer application did not appear to influence nematodes early in the season. However, in late season, organic fertilizers increased enrichment and structure indices and decreased channel index by the end of the zucchini cropping cycle.
Crotalaria juncea; free-living nematode; living mulch; no-till; strip-till; surface mulch
Two field trials were conducted between 2008 and 2010 in Maryland to evaluate the ability of an Italian ryegrass (IR) (Lolium multiflorum) cover crop to reduce populations of plant-parasitic nematodes while enhancing beneficial nematodes, soil mites and arthropods in the foliage of a no-till soybean (Glycine max) planting. Preplant treatments were: 1) previous year soybean stubble (SBS); and 2) herbicide-killed IR cover crop + previous year soybean stubble (referred to as IR). Heterodera glycines population densities were very low and no significant difference in population densities of H. glycines or Pratylenchus spp. were observed between IR and SBS. Planting of IR increased abundance of bacterivorous nematodes in 2009. A reverse trend was observed in 2010 where SBS had higher abundance of bacterivorous nematodes and nematode richness at the end of the cover cropping period. Italian ryegrass also did not affect insect pests on soybean foliage. However, greater populations of spiders were found on soybean foliage in IR treatments during both field trials. Potential causes of these findings are discussed.
conservation tillage; Heterodera glycines; Glycine max; Lolium multiflorum, crop management; soil mite; spider; Plathypena scabra; nematode community
Meals produced when oil is extracted from seeds in the Brassicaceae have been shown to suppress weeds and soilborne pathogens. These seed meals are commonly used individually as soil amendments; the goal of this research was to evaluate seed meal mixes of Brassica juncea (Bj) and Sinapis alba (Sa) against Meloidogyne incognita. Seed meals from Bj ‘Pacific Gold’ and Sa ‘IdaGold’ were tested alone and in combinations to determine rates and application times that would suppress M. incognita on pepper (Capsicum annuum) without phytotoxicity. Rates of soil application (% w/w) for the phytotoxicity study were: 0.5 Sa, 0.2 Bj, 0.25 Sa + 0.25 Bj, 0.375 Sa + 0.125 Bj, 0.125 Sa + 0.375 Bj, and 0, applied 0 – 5 weeks before transplant. Overall, 0.2% Bj was the least toxic meal to pepper seedlings. By comparison, 0.5% S. alba seed meal did not reduce lettuce (Lactuca sativa) seed germination at week 0, but all seed meal treatments containing B. juncea prevented or significantly reduced germination at week 0. The seed meals did not affect lettuce seed germination at weeks 1-5, but hypocotyl growth was reduced by all except 0.2% Bj at weeks 1, 4 and 5. Brassica juncea and Sa meals were tested for M. incognita suppression at 0.2, 0.15, 0.1 and 0.05%; mixtures were 0.1% Sa + 0.1% Bj, 0.15% Sa + 0.05% Bj, and 0.05% Sa + 0.15% Bj. All treatments were applied 2 weeks before transplant. The 0.2% Bj and 0.05% Sa + 0.15% Bj treatments overall had the longest shoots and highest fresh weights. Eggs per g root were lowest with 0.1 – 0.2% Bj amendments and the seed meal mixtures. The results indicate that Bj and some Bj + Sa mixtures can be applied close to transplant to suppress M. incognita populations on pepper; consequently, a seed meal mixture could be selected to provide activity against more than one pest or pathogen. For pepper, care should be taken in formulating mixtures so that Sa rates are low compared to Bj.
amendment; biofuel byproducts; Brassica; glucosinolate; management; Meloidogyne incognita; mustard seed meal; root-knot nematode; Sinapis
The antibiotic 2,4-diacetylphloroglucinol (DAPG) is produced by some isolates of the beneficial bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens. DAPG is toxic to many organisms, and crop yield increases have been reported after application of DAPG-producing P. fluorescens. This study was conducted to determine whether DAPG is toxic to selected nematodes. The plant-parasitic nematodes Heterodera glycines, Meloidogyne incognita, Pratylenchus scribneri and Xiphinema americanum, and the bacterial-feeding nematodes Caenorhabditis elegans, Pristionchus pacificus, and Rhabditis rainai, were immersed in concentrations ranging from 0 to 100 μg/ml DAPG. Egg hatch and viability of juveniles and adults were determined. DAPG was toxic to X. americanum adults, with an LD50 of 8.3 μg/ml DAPG. DAPG decreased M. incognita egg hatch, but stimulated C. elegans hatch during the first hours of incubation. Viability of M. incognita J2 and of C. elegans J1 and adults was not affected. There were no observed effects on the other nematodes. The study indicated that DAPG is not toxic to all nematodes, and did not affect the tested species of beneficial bacterial-feeding nematodes. Augmentation of DAPG-producing P. fluorescens populations for nematode biocontrol could be targeted to specific nematode species known to be affected by this compound and by other antibiotics produced by the bacteria, or these bacteria could be used for other possible effects, such as induced plant resistance.
biological control; Caenorhabditis elegans; Heterodera glycines; management; Meloidogyne incognita; Pratylenchus scribneri; Pristionchus pacificus; Pseudomonas fluorescens; Rhabditis rainai; Xiphinema americanum
Extracts from the plants Plantago lanceolata and P. rugelii were evaluated for toxicity to the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne incognita, the beneficial microbes Enterobacter cloacae, Pseudomonas fluorescens and Trichoderma virens, and the plant-pathogenic fungi Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. gladioli, Phytophthora capsici, Pythium ultimum, and Rhizoctonia solani. Wild plants were collected, roots were excised from shoots, and the plant parts were dried and ground to a powder. One set of extracts (10% w/v) was prepared in water and another in methanol. Treatments included extract concentrations of 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%, and water controls. Meloidogyne incognita egg hatch was recorded after 7-day exposure to the treatments, and second-stage juvenile (J2) activity after 48 hours. All extracts were toxic to eggs and J2, with P. lanceolata shoot extract tending to have the most activity against M. incognita. Numbers of active J2 remained the same or decreased in a 24-hour water rinse following the 48-hour extract treatment, indicating that the extracts were lethal. When data from water- and methanol-extracted roots and shoots of both plant species were combined for analysis, J2 tended to be more sensitive than eggs to the toxic compounds at lower concentrations, while the higher concentrations (75% and 100%) were equally toxic to both life stages. The effective concentrations causing 50% reduction (EC50) in egg hatch and in J2 viability were 44.4% and 43.7%, respectively. No extract was toxic to any of the bacteria or fungi in our assays.
Enterobacter cloacae; Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. gladioli; Meloidogyne incognita; natural product; Phytophthora capsici; Plantago lanceolata; Plantago rugelii; plantain; Pseudomonas fluorescens; Pythium ultimum; Rhizoctonia solani; root-knot nematode; Trichoderma virens
Numerous microbes are antagonistic to plant-parasitic nematodes and soilborne plant-pathogenic fungi, but few of these organisms are commercially available for management of these pathogens. Inconsistent performance of applied biocontrol agents has proven to be a primary obstacle to the development of successful commercial products. One of the strategies for overcoming inconsistent performance is to combine the disease-suppressive activity of two (or more) beneficial microbes in a biocontrol preparation. Such combinations have potential for more extensive colonization of the rhizosphere, more consistent expression of beneficial traits under a broad range of soil conditions, and antagonism to a larger number of plant pests or pathogens than strains applied individually. Conversely, microbes applied in combination also may have antagonistic interactions with each other. Increased, decreased, and unaltered suppression of the target pathogen or pest has been observed when biocontrol microbes have been applied in combination. Unfortunately, the ecological basis for increased or decreased suppression has not been determined in many cases and needs further consideration. The complexity of interactions involved in the application of multiple organisms for biological control has slowed progress toward development of successful formulations. However, this approach has potential for overcoming some of the efficacy problems that occur with application of individual biocontrol agents.
bacteria; biocontrol; combination; fungi; microbe; nematode
The survival of eggs of the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne javanica was studied in a series of experiments comparing the infectivity of egg masses (EM) to that of separated eggs (SE). The EM or SE were placed in the centers of pots containing citrus orchard soil and incubated for 24 hours, 10 days, or 20 days. Following each incubation time, 10-day-old tomato plants were planted in each pot, and 3 to 4 weeks later the plants were harvested and the galling indices determined. In the EM treatments, galling indices of ca. 4.0 to 5.0 were recorded after all three incubation periods; in the SE treatments, the infectivity gradually declined to trace amounts by 20 days. Incubating EM and SE for 2 weeks in four different soil types showed the same pattern in all the soil types: EM caused heavy infection of the test plants while the infection rate from the SE was extremely low. Incubating EM and SE in soil disinfested with formaldehyde resulted in comparable galling indices in most treatments. In petri dish experiments, 100 mg of natural soil was spread at the perimeter of a Phytagel surface and EM or SE of M. incognita were placed in the center. Light microscopy revealed that within 5 to 10 days the SE were attacked by a broad spectrum of microorganisms and were obliterated while the eggs within the EM remained intact. Separated eggs placed within sections of gelatinous matrix (GM) were not attacked by the soil microorganisms. When selected microbes were placed on Phytagel surfaces with EM of M. incognita, electron microscopy demonstrated that at least some microbes colonized the GM. As the major difference between the EM and the SE was the presence of the GM, the GM may serve as a barrier to the invasion of some microorganisms.
biological control; Burkholderia cepacia; egg; electron microscopy; gelatinous matrix; Meloidogyne; Mortierella sp.; nematode; root-knot nematode
In-vitro methods were developed to test fungi for production of metabolites affecting nematode egg hatch and mobility of second-stage juveniles. Separate assays were developed for two nematodes: root-knot nematode (Meloidogyne incognita) and soybean cyst nematode (Heterodera glycines). For egg hatch to be successfully assayed, eggs must first be surface-disinfested to avoid the confounding effects of incidental microbial growth facilitated by the fungal culture medium. Sodium hypochlorite was more effective than chlorhexidine diacetate or formaldehyde solutions at surface-disinfesting soybean cyst nematode eggs from greenhouse cultures. Subsequent rinsing with sodium thiosulfate to remove residual chlorine from disinfested eggs did not improve either soybean cyst nematode hatch or juvenile mobility. Soybean cyst nematode hatch in all culture media was lower than in water. Sodium hypochlorite was also used to surface-disinfest root-knot nematode eggs. In contrast to soybean cyst nematode hatch, root-knot nematode hatch was higher in potato dextrose broth medium than in water. Broth of the fungus Fusarium equiseti inhibited root-knot nematode egg hatch and was investigated in more detail. Broth extract and its chemical fractions not only inhibited egg hatch but also immobilized second-stage juveniles that did hatch, confirming that the fungus secretes nematode-antagonistic metabolites.
bioassay technique; biological control; culture broth; egg hatch; fungus; Fusarium equiseti; Heterodera glycines; in-vitro assay; Meloidogyne incognita; microbial secondary metabolites; nematicide; nematode
Nematodes produced in monoxenic culture are used for many research purposes. To maximize the number of Heterodera glycines produced in culture, 24 soybean cultivars (maturity groups 0-8) were evaluated for host suitability. A strain of H. glycines race 3, maintained in monoxenic culture on excised soybean root tips of cv. Kent, was inoculated into 20 petri dishes of each cultivar. The highest numbers of first-generation females per petri dish were produced on cultivars Bass, Williams 82, Kent, Proto, and Chapman, and the lowest on cultivars Lambert and Chesapeake. A diapause-like period with decreased nematode production was recorded on some cultivars but not others. Six generations of cultivation on CX 366 did not affect the number of females produced. The results indicated that soybean maturity group could not be used as a parameter for selecting the optimum cultivars for nematode production, and that only J2 petri dishes needed to be counted to determine a 60-female difference per petri dish among cultivars. This study demonstrated that H. glycines populations in monoxenic culture can be more than quadrupled by selection of an appropriate soybean cultivar.
Glycine max; Heterodera glycines; monoxenic culture; propagation; root tip culture; soybean; soybean cyst nematode; technique; tissue culture
A wild type strain ofVerticillium lecanii and a mutant strain with increased tolerance to the fungicide benomyl were evaluated in greenhouse experiments for effects on Heterodera glycines populations. Nematodes were applied at 300 eggs and juveniles per 4,550-cm³ pot (two soybean plants in 4,990 g loamy sand per pot) and at both 300 and 10,000 eggs and juveniles per 1,720-cm³ pot (one soybean plant in 2,060 g sand per pot). With 300 nematodes added per pot, both V. lecanii strains significantly reduced nematode populations in loamy sand (fungus applied at 0.02% dry weight per dry weight loamy sand) and sand (0.006% and 0.06% fungus application rates). The mutant strain applied at 0.002% to sand also significantly reduced cyst numbers. When 10,000 nematodes were added per pot, only the mutant strain at 0.06% significantly decreased population. Various media were tested for isolation of the fungus strains from prills, loamy sand, and sand, but the fungi were recovered from few of the greenhouse pots.
biological control; fungus; Heterodera glycines; mutant; nematode; nematode antagonist; soybean cyst nematode; Verticillium lecanii
Ten strains of fungi were tested for tolerance to the fungicide benomyl. Verticillium chlamydosporium strain 2 did not grow in the presence of benomyl; Drechraeria coniospora strains 1 and 2 and Chaetomium sp. tolerated only 0.1 μg benomyl/ml medium; Acremonium bacillisporum, an unidentified fungus, and Phoma chrysanthemicola uniformly grew at 1 μg/ml, but some hyphae grew at higher benomyl concentrations; Fusarium sp. tolerated 475 μg/ml, but some hyphae grew on medium amended with 1,000 μg/ml; Verticillium lecanii and V. chlamydosporium strain 1 routinely tolerated 1,000 μg/ml. Fungi generally grew more slowly at higher than at lower benomyl concentrations. Strains with elevated tolerance to benomyl were selected from Acremonium bacillisporum, Drechmeria coniospora, Fusarium sp., and an unidentified fungus. These strains retained the increased tolerance after repeated transfers on unamended medium.
benomyl; biological control; fungicide effect; fungus; Heterodera glycines; nematode; nontarget organism; soybean cyst nematode
Twenty fungi were assayed in vitro for antagonism to eggs of Heterodera glycines. Eight of the fungi were isolated from cysts or eggs of H. glycines during the current study, one was isolated from Panagrellus redivivus, and eleven were obtained from other researchers or collections. The bioassays were conducted on eggs from nematodes that had been grown monoxenically on excised root tips. Phoma chrysanthemicola, one strain of Verticillium chlamydosporium, and one strain of V. lecanii caused a decrease (P < 0.01, P < 0.05, P < 0.05, respectively) in the number of viable eggs, although no hyphae were observed colonizing live eggs. Trichoderma polysporum infected live eggs but enhanced (P < 0.05) egg survival. Acremonium bacillisporum, Chaetomium sp., Drechmeria coniospora (two strains), Epicoccum sp., Exophiala jeanselmei, Fusarium sp., Neocosmospora vasinfecta, Scytalidium fulvum, Trichoderma harzianum (two strains), V. chlamydosporium (one strain), V. lecanii (three strains), and an unidentified fungus did not measurably affect egg viability, even though hyphae of five of these fungi were seen in live eggs. The bioassay provides a useful step in the selection of a biological control agent for this major nematode pest.
biological control; fungus-nematode interaction; Heterodera glycines; antagonist bioassay; soybean cyst nematode; Acremonium bacillisporum; Chaetomium sp.; Drechmeria coniospora; Epicoccum sp.; Exophiala jeanselmei; Fusarium sp.; Neocosmospora vasinfecta; Phoma chrysanthemicola; Scytalidium fulvum; Trichoderma harzianum; Trichoderma polysporum; Verticillium chlamydosporium; Verticillium lecanii