Submitted to: Nematropica
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/25/2010
Publication Date: 12/29/2010
Citation: Sipes, B.S., Cabos, R. 2010. Production of nematode-free tropical foliage and flower plants for export. Nematropica. 40:154-155. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Many export markets impose quarantines against plant-parasitic nematodes in potted plants. Regulations and protocols designed to maintain nematode-free plants allow for the issuing of phytosanitary certificates and the export of potted plants. However, infestations still occur. Possible sources of nematodes include potting media, irrigation water, and propagative material. Soil-less potting mixes of peat moss, cinder, bark, or perlite are not sterile. Irrigation water from catchments, ditches, or municipal supplies may harbor nematodes and infect plants. Propagative material may not be free of nematodes and simply carry nematodes along as plants are planted into nematode-free media. To ensure nematode-free potting media, the media must be heat or chemically sterilized. Water needs to be clear of soil sediment. Propagative material can be tissue-cultured. Heat-treatment has been used to rid anthurium stems of burrowing nematodes. Worker education is equally important to ensure that protocols are followed and plants remain nematode-free. Therapeutic treatments to clean infected plants can be used. Dips and drenches of Avid or Pylon have worked well in controlling burrowing and foliar nematodes in anthurium and orchids. These therapeutic pesticide treatments however lead to challenges in detecting low nematode populations. An integrated approach that limits sources of nematode introduction and has workers follow best practices should ensure the production of nematode-free plants suitable for export.