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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Davis, California » Crops Pathology and Genetics Research » Research » Research Project #430724

Research Project: Optimizing Anaerobic Soil Disinfestation for Management of Prunus Replant Problems

Location: Crops Pathology and Genetics Research

Project Number: 2032-22000-016-04-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Dec 1, 2016
End Date: Jan 31, 2019

1. In small plots or microplots, test alternative carbon substrates, soil water management systems, and tarping systems for effects on anaerobic soil disinfestation efficacy and costs. 2. Based on the results in small plots, select optimal carbon substrates, soil water mamgement systems, and tarping systems and test them further with growers in commercial orchard settings.

The objectives will be accomplished via almond and stone fruit orchard replant trials at the Kearney Agricultural Center (KAC), the USDA-ARS San Joaquin Valley Agricultural Sciences Center (SVASC), and in commericial orchards of the San Joaquin Valley. Trials at KAC and SVASC will initially focus on optimizing the ASD treatments for affordability and efficacy. Anaerobic soil disinfestation (ASD) optimization treatments will examine efficacy and costs of different: substrates (e.g., rice bran, powdered almond shells, grape pumace, and cover crop residues); substrate rates and application zones; soil water regimes and water application methods; and soil tarps and alternative soil sealing methods. A subset of optimized treatments will then be tested with commercial growers at sites impacted by prunus replant disease (PRD) and plant parasitic nematodes (PPN). In all trials, efficacy of ASD treatments will be compared to that of preplant fumigation (Telone C35) and nontreated controls. The treatments will be assessed by analyzing: tree growth (trunk circumference, canopy area), incidence of root infection by PRD pathogens; root and soil populations of PPN and associated organisms that supress these populations; and comprehensive costbenefit analyses. Project results will be extended to stakeholders via field days, meetings, online media, and popular and technical publications.