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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Fort Pierce, Florida » U.S. Horticultural Research Laboratory » Subtropical Plant Pathology Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #293262

Title: A case study of a bacterial pathogen in irrigation water

item Hong, Jason
item PINGSHENG, JI - University Of Georgia
item MOMOL, TIMUR - University Of Florida
item OLSON, STEVE - University Of Florida
item PRADHANANG, PRAKSASH - University Of Florida
item JONES, JEFFREY - University Of Florida

Submitted to: Bacteriophage
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/5/2013
Publication Date: 4/15/2014
Citation: Hong, J.C., Pingsheng, J., Momol, T., Olson, S., Pradhanang, P., Jones, J.B. 2014. A case study of a bacterial pathogen in irrigation water. Bacteriophage. ..

Interpretive Summary: Irrigation water can become a means by which plant pathogens are disseminated throughout a growing production. This book chapter is a review of previously reported different incidences of the bacterial pathogen, R. solanacearum, in Europe, Africa, and North America being spread throughout fields by way of contaminated irrigation water. The chapter addresses methods for detecting and identifying the pathogen, survival of the pathogen in the water sources, and methods for disease management. Due to the potentially large economic losses this pathogen could have had on the potato industry, most of the focus of the European studies pertains to this crop. The North American section focuses on identifying an exotic strain of the bacterium in Northern Florida. Based on phylogenetic analysis, this strain is believed to have originated from the Caribbean. This strain was more aggressive on tomato and had a larger host range than the typical Florida strains.

Technical Abstract: This chapter presents a case study of how exotic strains of Ralstonia solanacearum were disseminated throughout Europe and Florida via waterways used for irrigation. Several studies have demonstrated that aquatic weeds that commonly grow in rivers and ponds are able to harbor the pathogen and allow the bacterium to overwinter. These plants provide an environment for the bacterium to survive in unfavorable conditions, such as low temperatures and lack of nutrients. A positive correlation has been identified between water temperature and bacterial population, which corresponds to reports from Florida growers that bacterial wilt is more severe for the fall crop than the spring crop. Several strategies that have proven effective in managing the disease are discussed later in this chapter.