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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Mycology and Nematology Genetic Diversity and Biology Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #310593

Research Project: MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES FOR PLANT-PARASITIC NEMATODES: COVER CROPS, AMENDMENTS, AND INTERNAL MOLECULAR TARGETS

Location: Mycology and Nematology Genetic Diversity and Biology Laboratory

Title: Mustard seed meal for management of root-knot nematode and weeds in tomato production

Author
item Meyer, Susan
item Zasada, Inga
item Rupprecht, Shannon
item VANGESSEL, MARK - University Of Delaware
item HOOKS, CERRUTI - University Of Maryland
item MORRA, MATTHEW - University Of Idaho
item EVERTS, KATHRYNE - University Of Maryland

Submitted to: HortTechnology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/6/2015
Publication Date: 4/23/2015
Publication URL: https://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/60944
Citation: Meyer, S.L., Zasada, I.A., Rupprecht, S.M., Vangessel, M., Hooks, C., Morra, M., Everts, K. 2015. Mustard seed meal for management of root-knot nematode and weeds in tomato production. HortTechnology. 25(2):192-202.

Interpretive Summary: Plant-parasitic nematodes and weeds cause severe economic losses to growers in the U.S. and around the world. Mustard seed meals, a byproduct of biodiesel production from seeds of mustard plants, are applied to fields as fertilizers and as amendments for suppressing populations of weeds and plant pathogens. Therefore, mustard seed meals from two different plants, Brassica juncea and Sinapis alba, were tested for effects on tomato plants and for suppression of root-knot nematode and weed populations. In the greenhouse, plants grown in soil without meal amendments had more nematode eggs on the roots than plants in soil amended with Brassica juncea or with a mixture of the two meals. In a field study, the lowest number of nematodes occurred (in one of two years) in soils amended with Brassica juncea meal, Sinapis alba meal or a mixture of the two meals. No mustard meal treatment affected weed populations. These results are significant because they demonstrate that Sinapis alba meal shows potential for use in tomato beds as a means to reduce nematode populations, but application rates need to be further investigated so that results are consistent. Researchers and growers will be able to use this work in developing amendments that can be used in conventional and organic agriculture.

Technical Abstract: Mustard seed meals of indian mustard [InM (Brassica juncea)] and yellow mustard [YeM (Sinapis alba)], alone and combined, were tested for effects on tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) plants and for suppression of southern root-knot nematode [RKN (Meloidogyne incognita)] and weed populations. In the greenhouse, with all seed meal treatments applied at 0.25% total w/w soil, low tomato plant stands (up to 60% dying/dead) resulted from amendment with 3 YeM:1 InM, 1 YeM:1 InM, and YeM, applied right before transplant. Compared with untreated controls, low numbers of RKN eggs per gram root were consistently recorded from amendment with 3 YeM:1 InM. In a 2012 field study, incorporation of 1 YeM:1 InM (1700 lb/acre) resulted in lower tomato root biomass than fertilizer application (504 lb/acre), YeM or InM (each 1700 lb/acre). All treatments were applied with added fertilizer to achieve 100–102 lb/acre nitrogen, 7.4 lb/acre phosphorus, 74.7 lb/acre potassium, 6.0 lb/acre sulfur, and 1.0 lb/acre boron. The lowest numbers of RKN eggs per gram root (harvest 2012) were collected from plots amended with InM (1700 lb/acre), YeM (850 lb/acre), and 3 YeM:1 InM (1700 lb/acre), but the numbers were not significantly different from fertilizer only (504 lb/acre) controls. Highest and lowest tomato yields (numbers of fruit) in 2012 were recorded from YeM (850 lb/acre) and 3 YeM:1 InM (1700 lb/acre) amendments, respectively. In 2013, there were no significant differences among treatments in eggs per gram root or in tomato yields. No mustard seed meal treatment affected weed populations. At the tested rates, YeM seed meal showed potential for use in tomato beds but results were inconsistent between years.