Submitted to: Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/6/2012
Publication Date: 7/5/2012
Citation: Handiseni, M., Brown, J., Zemetra, R., Mazzola, M. 2012. Use of Brassicaceous seed meals to improve seedling emergence of tomato and pepper in Pythium ultimum infested soils. Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection. 45:1204-1209. Interpretive Summary: Organic soil amendments often have been promoted as a means to control soilborne plant diseases. However, the effective use of such an environmentally sensitive method of disease control has been impeded by a lack of understanding concerning the means by which amendments provide disease control. Tissues from plants belonging to the Brassicaceae have been promoted as a soil amendment for the control of soilborne plant diseases due to their production of glucosinolates, which yield anti-microbial compounds upon hydrolysis. In this study, brassicaceae seed meals, a waste residue resulting from oil seed extraction were evaluated for the ability to control multiple soil inhabiting pathogens that limit the productivity of tomato, pepper and wheat production systems. Seed meal amendments effectively controlled damping-off of tomato and pepper caused by the pathogen Pythium ultimum. In most instances, control was the result of chemicals released from the brassicaceae residues after incorporation into soil. The white mustard, Sinapis alba, seed meal was also shown to be phytotoxic to pepper and tomato if soils were planted to soon after seed meal amendment. Therefore, use of lower application rates and increased delay in seeding after SM amendment, may be necessary to minimize phytotoxicity.
Technical Abstract: Growth room studies were conducted to determine the impact of Brassicaceae seed meals on the emergence of tomato and pepper seedlings in Pythium ultimum infested soils. Pasteurised Burch sandy loam soils were amended with intact and denatured seed meal of rape seed and mustard. Brassica juncea or Brassica napus intact seed meal increased the tomato and pepper seedling emergence. Interestingly, B. napus amended soils resulted in the same seedling emergence with B. juncea regardless of their relatively lower glucosinolate content compared to mustard-based seed meals. Seedling emergence in soils amended with intact Sinapis alba seed meal was significantly the lowest for both tomato and pepper seedlings. In contrast, seedling emergence was higher in soils amended with denatured than intact S. alba seed meals suggesting some glucosinolate-related inhibitory effect on seedling emergence of both crops. Glycine max seed meal amendment improved the seedling emergence better than the control but to a lower-level when compared to glucosinolate containing seed meals. This finding suggests that even though improvement of seedling emergence of tomato and pepper in P. ultimum infested soils can be achieved using Brassicaceae seed meals,it cannot be entirely attributed to glucosinolate-related processes. These studies demonstrate that intact B. napus and B. juncea seed meals can be used to improve tomato and pepper seedling emergence in P. ultimum infested soils.