Submitted to: Horticultural Industry Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: January 18, 2002
Publication Date: April 15, 2002
Citation: Davis, A.R., Bruton, B.D., Pair, S.D. 2002. Powdery mildew resistance in watermelon. Horticultural Industry Conference. p. 178-181.
Powdery mildew (PM) has been a devastating disease for many cucurbit crops in the past. However, watermelon has typically been resistant to this disease. Unfortunately, outbreaks of PM in watermelon were confirmed last year in OK, TX, FL, CA and SC suggesting introduction of a more virulent race of PM with epidemic potential. We previously screened Citrullus lanatus for resistance to this virulent race of Sphaerotheca fuliginea and found tolerance to PM in the Plant Introduction Germplasm Collection. Utilizing one of the PI lines that had high resistance to this disease we made crosses and analyzed the inheritance of resistance to PM. During this study we determined the PM is of race 0 or 1 and inheritance of resistance to this virulent race of PM is dominant and likely multigenic. The information gained from this study will be useful in transferring PM tolerance into commercial watermelon cultivars thus reducing the number of fungicide applications necessary for the control of PM on watermelon.