Submitted to: Phytopathology
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/5/2004
Publication Date: 7/31/2004
Citation: Nyczepir, A.P. Field evaluation of nonchemical alternatives for control of mesocriconema xenoplax on peach. Phytopathology. 2004. v.94(6):Abstract p.77. Interpretive Summary: Ring nematodes are widely distributed throughout the world with certain species considered to be economically important to the stone fruit industry. Probably the most studied ring nematode species on Prunus is Mesocriconema xenoplax. This ring nematode is the only plant-parasitic nematode that has been associated with the peach tree short life (PTSL) disease complex in the southeastern United States. Tree loss due to PTSL in South Carolina alone is estimated at over $5 million per year. New preplant alternatives to chemical control (i.e., nematode suppressive ground covers) that are less hazardous to man and also more environmentally safe must be found to protect peach trees from this ring nematode. Selected crop rotations in conjunction with Guardian rootstock were evaluated from 1996-2003, as a potential preplant ground cover management strategy in suppressing the ring nematode population density and to determine the influence long-term preplant crop rotations have on peach tree growth and incidence of PTSL. Results indicate that nematode populations were greater on Nemaguard than for Guardian rootstock on all sampling dates (2000-2003), indicating that Nemaguard was a better host for the nematode. Preplanting 3-continuous yrs of canola/sorghum was as more effective than preplant methyl bromide fumigation in increasing tree survival from PTSL 26 months after establishing the orchard. These data provide useful insights into the use of canola/sorghum in conjunction with Guardian rootstock as a pre- and postplant alternative to chemical control of the ring nematode on PTSL sites in the Southeast.
Technical Abstract: The effects of 6 preplant rotation systems in conjunction with Guardian peach rootstock as alternatives to chemical control of <i>Mesocriconema xenoplax<i> (Mx) were investigated from 1996-2003. Rotation establishment was initiated in 1996 in a site known to be infested with Mx and having a history of peach tree short life (PTSL). Preplant crop rotation systems included (i) 1-year wheat-sorghum, (ii) 3-continuous years wheat-sorghum, (iii) 3-continuous years fallow-sorghum, (iv) 1-year canola-sorghum, (v) 3-continuous years canola-sorghum, and (vi) 3-continuous years peach. In 1999, all trees were removed from the continuous peach plots and half of these plots were then fumigated with methyl bromide. In 2000, all plots were planted to either Nemaguard or Guardian rootstock. Three-year rotations suppressed Mx populations for up to 21 months following orchard establishment. Three-year rotations were comparable to preplant methyl bromide fumigation in prolonging tree survival. Integrating selected rotations with Guardian rootstock provides an alternative to chemical control of Mx and PTSL.