Comparative effects of soil solarization with single and double layers of polyethylene film on survival ofFusarium oxysporum F. SP.Vasinfectum
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Soil solarization (SoSol) with a single layer of transparent polyethylene (PE) film, traps considerable heat and moisture in soil. Solarization of field soil with two layers of 1 mil (25 μm thick) PE film, separated by a 6-cm air layer, caused soil temperatures at 15 cm depth to rise by 12.7°C and 3.6°C over those in noncovered soil or soil covered by one layer of film, respectively; at 30 cm depth the respective differences in temperature were 11.2°C and 2.7°C. Viability of propagules (mainly chlamydospores) ofFusarium oxysporum f. sp.vasinfectum that had been buried at 30 cm depth, was reduced after 31 days of solarization by 97.5%, 58%, and 0% under a double film layer, a single layer, and in non-covered soil, respectively. The insulating effect of a double layer of PE film improved heat retention in soil and the solarization effect.