Location: Crop Protection and Management Research
Project Number: 6602-21220-015-00
Start Date: Apr 09, 2012
End Date: Apr 08, 2017
Field and greenhouse experiments will be conducted to improve management of plant-parasitic nematodes in cotton and peanut. Host-plant resistance to nematodes is the cornerstone of our nematode management strategy. We will work cooperatively with plant breeders to develop cultivars and germplasm with desirable agronomic traits and a high level of nematode resistance. Plant material will be selected for resistance using traditional and marker-assisted selection. However, we cannot rely exclusively on host-plant resistance for managing nematodes. We will also investigate ecologically-based control strategies that can be integrated with resistant cultivars to increase the durability of resistance and control a broader spectrum of nematode pathogens. Biological control organisms are being marketed for use in cotton and peanut, and also occur naturally in fields. We will explore the effect of crop production practices (tillage, fumigation, cultivar, and cover crops) on these antagonistic organisms with the goal of conserving or enhancing their activity against nematodes. We will identify crops that can be grown in rotation with cotton and peanut that will reduce populations of root-knot nematode either by producing toxic metabolites (high residue rye) or by limiting nematode reproduction (sorghum for bioenergy use). Our integrated management approach will also include increasing plant tolerance to nematode damage by applying cytokinin to seedlings. Finally, we will combine the most effective and economical control options from earlier years of the project to test different integrated management programs for plant-parasitic nematodes in the southeastern United States.