1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
Develop integrated pest management of the potato psyllid and Liberibacter in a multicrop system (potato, tomato, and pepper).
1b. Approach (from AD-416)
Conduct insect transmission studies under laboratory conditions to determine Liberibacter acquisition and inoculation access time required for the potato psyllid to effectively transmit the bacterium and induce diseases. Determine the impact of Liberibacter on different plant growth stages under controlled field cage conditions. Determine density of potato psyllid required for this insect pest to effectively cause diseases in potato, tomato, and pepper.
3. Progress Report
The project goal is to develop effective management strategies for potato psyllid and zebra chip disease. The project addresses NP 304 2A, Protection of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops, Biology and Ecology of Pests and Natural Enemies. The potato psyllid has recently become a major concern because of its direct feeding and vectoring of diseases caused by the bacterium liberibacter to potato, tomato, and pepper crops in U.S. and other countries. The main objective of this research is to develop integrated pest management of the potato psyllid and liberibacter in a multicrop system that includes potato, tomato, and pepper. A series of experiments: 1) assessed liberibacter transmission to potato, tomato, and pepper by the potato psyllid under laboratory conditions, 2) determined the impact of liberibacter on different plant growth stages of potato, tomato, and pepper under controlled field cage conditions; and 3) determined density of potato psyllid required for this insect pest to effectively cause diseases in potato, tomato, and pepper. Preliminary results indicate that there are no significant differences in feeding biology of the potato psyllid on the three host plants. Also, it has been determined that as few as one liberibacter-infective potato psyllid per plant is enough to effectively induce the disease after brief exposure to the three host plants and to cause significant yield loss. In addition, all the plant growth stages of potato, tomato, and pepper appear susceptible to the bacterium. Information from this research suggests that all plant growth stages of potato, tomato, and pepper need protection from the potato psyllid to minimize damage caused by liberibacter to these crops. This project is an extension of research on the management of insects vectoring potato diseases and addresses objective 3 of the related in-house project. Monitoring of activities and progress on this project was accomplished by direct supervision of on-site employees, and use of site visits, e-mail and telephone to communicate with off-site collaborators.