Submitted to: University of Idaho Miscellaneous Publication
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: May 15, 2006
Publication Date: June 25, 2006
Citation: Larkin, R.P., Lynch, R.P., Griffin, T.S., Honeycutt, C.W. 2006. Brassica rotations for managing soilborne potato diseases in the northeast. University of Idaho Miscellaneous Publication. CD-ROM Technical Abstract: Numerous soilborne diseases are persistent, recurrent problems in potato production, resulting in reduced plant growth and vigor, and reduced tuber yield and quality. In a series of field experiments conducted on commercial and research farms in the Northeastern U.S., a variety of Brassica crops are being evaluated as rotation, cover, and green manure crops for their potential in managing soilborne diseases and improving potato yields through biofumigation. In the first set of experiments on commercial farms with substantial soilborne disease problems, canola, rapeseed, and oriental mustard incorporated as green manures reduced powdery scab by 15-40% and black scurf by 50-85%, and oriental mustard reduced common scab by 25% in the subsequent potato crop compared to a standard grain rotation. In ongoing research, multiple two-year rotations have been established with up to six different Brassica crops (canola, winter rapeseed, condiment mustard, oriental mustard, oilseed radish, and a white/oriental mustard blend). To determine best management for optimum disease control, tuber yield, and economic viability, rotations are being managed as both harvested and green manure crops, and with and without a fall rapeseed cover crop. The range of Brassica crops and management options will provide a relatively comprehensive evaluation for optimizing the biofumigation properties of Brassicas in potato rotations.