Response of cut flowers and bedding plants to root-knot nematodes

Namgay Om, Robert McSorley, John J. Frederick


Five separate experiments were conducted to test the susceptibility of different cut flowers and bedding plants to root-knot nematodes, Meloidogyne incognita (Kofoid & White) Chitwood race 2, M. javanica (Treub) Chitwood, and M. arenaria (Neal) Chitwood. The first set of experiments involving two separate tests was conducted in Oct. 2007. The first two tests consisted of seven cultivars of cut flowers and bedding plants grown under greenhouse conditions to test their susceptibility to root-knot nematodes, Meloidogyne incognita race 2 and M. javanica. Cultivars examined included ‘Thumbelina’ and ‘Envy’ zinnia (Zinnia elegans L.); ‘Petite’ and ‘Jaguar’ marigold (Tagetes patula L.), and ‘Snowdrift’ marigold (T. erecta L.); ‘Dwarf Jewel Blend’ nasturtium (Tropaeolum minus L.); and ‘Potomac Pink’ snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus L.). In a separate experiment, ‘Potomac Pink’ snapdragon plants were tested to determine their response to M. arenaria and varying concentrations of M. incognita race 2 inoculum. The last two tests were conducted in Dec. 2007 and involved M. incognita race 2 and M. javanica. The cultivars tested included ‘Butterfly Blend’ delphinium (Delphinium grandiflorum L.); ‘Silver Princess’ Shasta daisy (Chrysanthemum maximum Raymond); ‘Blue Bedder’ salvia (Salvia splendens Ker-Gawl); ‘Chabaud Giant’ carnation (Dianthus caryophyllus L.); ‘Dwarf Magic Carpet’ and ‘Potomac Pink’ snapdragons. Based on the numbers of nematodes recovered from the root systems and the soil, nasturtium and the two cultivars of snapdragon were susceptible to the root-knot nematodes evaluated while marigold, zinnia, salvia, and carnation were poor hosts (P ≤ 0.05). Shasta daisy was moderately susceptible. ‘Potomac Pink’ snapdragon was also equally susceptible to both M. incognita and M. arenaria.

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283