Location: Horticultural Crops ResearchTitle: Pratylenchus species associated with blueberry (Vaccinium spp.) and weed species in the Pacific North-west of North America
Submitted to: Canadian Journal of Plant Pathology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/11/2017
Publication Date: 9/8/2017
Citation: Zasada, I.A., Peetz, A.B., Forge, T.A. 2017. Pratylenchus species associated with blueberry (Vaccinium spp.) and weed species in the Pacific North-west of North America. Canadian Journal of Plant Pathology. 39(4):497-502. https://doi.org/10.1080/07060661.2017.1367724.
Interpretive Summary: Plant-parasitic nematodes are microscopic soil worms that cause ten billion dollars in U.S. crop losses annually. Blueberry is a rapidly expanding agricultural sector in the Pacific Northwest region of the U.S. and Canada. This research was conducted to determine the occurrence, distribution and identity of root-lesion nematodes (Pratylenchus spp.) in blueberry fields in this region, which was unknown prior to this research. Soil samples were collected from multiple locations in 11 blueberry fields and nematodes were extracted from roots and soil. Root lesion nematodes were commonly encountered in blueberry fields in the Pacific Northwest with approximately 50% of the samples containing this nematode. The predominant species of root lesion nematode, Pratylenchus crenatus, was identified. These results are significant because they provide valuable information to diagnosticians and scientists regarding which plant-parasitic nematodes are associated with blueberry in the Pacific Northwest region of the U.S. and Canada and may require management.
Technical Abstract: Blueberry (Vaccinium spp.) is a rapidly growing segment of the agriculture economies in the Pacific Northwest (PNW) of the United States and Canada. Plant-parasitic nematodes are commonly found in blueberry production fields, with the root lesion nematode (Pratylenchus species) reported as being widespread. In previous surveys of plant-parasitic nematodes in PNW blueberries fields, the species of Pratylenchus was not determined. We sampled eleven blueberry production fields in the PNW and collected blueberry and weed roots and associated soil samples in the spring and fall and quantified and identified collected Pratylenchus species. Pratylenchus crenatus was the dominant species found in blueberry roots and associated soil. Across seasons, P. crenatus was recovered from 47 and 53% of collected blueberry root samples at mean population densities of 66 and 50 nematodes/g root in spring and fall, respectively. Several weed species were also identified for the first time as hosts for P. crenatus including Bellis perennis, Bromis sp. Calystegia sepium, Capsella bursa-pastoris, Cynodon dactylon, Echinochloa crus-galli, Epilobium angustifolium, Hypochaeris radicata, Polygonum lapathifolium, Sencio sp., Sonchus sp., Taraxacum officinale, and Trifolium sp. Epilobium angustifolium, Senecio sp., and Trifolium sp. were excellent hosts for P. crenatus with > 6,000 nematodes/g root. Our results clearly demonstrate that P. crenatus is a parasite of blueberry in the PNW and that many of the weeds found in blueberry fields are also hosts for this nematode.