Control of Late Blight (Phytophthora capsici ) in Pepper Plant with a Compost Containing Multitude of Chitinase-producing Bacteria
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- Chae, D.H., De Jin, R., Hwangbo, H. et al. Biocontrol (2006) 51: 339. doi:10.1007/s10526-005-2934-x
Compost sustaining a multitude of chitinase-producing bacteria was evaluated in a greenhouse study as a soil amendment for the control of late blight (Phytophthora capsici L.) in pepper (Capsicum annuum L.). Microbial population and exogenous enzyme activity were measured in the rhizosphere and correlated to the growth and health of pepper plant. Rice straw was composted with and without a chitin source, after having been inoculated with an aliquot of coastal area soil containing a known titer of chitinase-producing bacteria. P. capsici inoculated plants cultivated in chitin compost-amended soil exhibited significantly higher root and shoot weights and lower root mortality than plants grown in pathogen-inoculated control compost. Chitinase and β-1,3-glucanase activities in rhizosphere of plants grown in chitin compost-amended soil were twice that seen in soil amended with control compost. Colony forming units of chitinase-producing bacteria isolated from rhizosphere of plants grown in chitin compost-amended soil were 103 times as prevalent as bacteria in control compost. These results indicate that increasing the population of chitinase-producing bacteria and soil enzyme activities in rhizosphere by compost amendment could alleviate pathogenic effects of P. capsici.