Studies on some fungi isolated from the rhizosphere of tomato plants and the consequent prospect for the control of Verticillium wilt
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Biological control of Verticillium wilt disease with antagonistic micro-organisms was studied. Antagonism of some fungi, isolated from tomato rhizosphere, toVerticillium albo-atrum R & B. was observedin vitro. A clearly defined zone, in which the growth of the pathogen was inhibited, was observed withPenicillium spp. (includingPenicillium chrysogenum Thom) andFusarium culmorum (S.G. Sm) Sacc., whileTrichoderma viride pers. ex Fries,Gliocladium spp. andPenicillium vermiculatum Dangeard, suppressed the growth ofV. albo-atrum by penetrating, and overgrowing it. OnlyT. viride andP. vermiculatum culture filtrate added to the Dox's agar, reduced the radial growth ofV. alboatrum.
Root-dip application of culture filtrates ofT. viride andP. chrysogenum was found to be most effective in controlling the disease, followed by other species ofPenicillium andGliocladium spp. WhileFusarium culmorum provided no control. Improvement of plant height and vigour with a better yield due to culture filtrate treatment occurred. Root-dip application of antagonistic fungal propagules (T. viride, P. chrysogenum) to tomato seedlings was also very effective in controlling wilt in tomato plants grown inV. albo-atrum infested soil.
Key WordsAntagonism Biological control Disease severity Rhizosphere microflora TomatoVerticillium albo-atrum
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