Host Suitability and Response of Asparagus Cultivars to Meloidogyne Species and Races

P. J. Dudash, K. R. Barker


The host-parasite relationships of asparagus and Meloidogyne spp. were examined under greenhouse and microplot conditions. Meloidogyne species and races differed greatly in their ability to reproduce on asparagus seedlings. Meloidogyne hapla generally failed to reproduce, and M. javanica, M. arenaria race 1, and M. incognita race 3 reproduced poorly, with a reproduction factor (Rf = final population/initial population) usually 1.0. Only M. arenaria race 2 and M. incognita races 1 and 4 reproduced consistently on all asparagus cultivars tested (Rf typically 1-11). No effect of M. incognita race 4 on host growth was detected. Meloidogyne arenaria race 2 and M. incognita race 1 had slight negative effects (5-10%) on plant and root growth. Key words: asparagus, Asparagus officinalis, damage potential, Meloidogyne spp., nematode, population dynamics, resistance, root-knot nematode, tolerance.

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