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Calcium chelate is as effective as phosphite in controlling Phytophthora root rot in glasshouse trials

Khdiar, M.Y., Burgess, T.I.ORCID: 0000-0002-7962-219X, Barber, P.A. and Hardy, G.E.St.J. (2022) Calcium chelate is as effective as phosphite in controlling Phytophthora root rot in glasshouse trials. Plant Pathology . Early View.

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Species in the genus Phytophthora cause significant economic losses in crops and damage to forests and natural ecosystems worldwide. Currently, phosphite is the most effective chemical for disease management, but excessive phosphite concentrations can result in phytotoxicity in plants and the development of tolerance by the pathogen. Two newly developed metal chelates and phosphite (alone and in combination) were tested for their in vitro and in planta efficacy against Phytophthora cinnamomi. In glasshouse trials, 0.25% and 0.5% of each chemical treatment (phosphite, Ca chelate, Zn chelate) and Ca chelate + phosphite were used as a foliar application on 3-month-old seedlings of Banksia grandis (experiment not repeated) and Eucalyptus marginata, prior to inoculation with P. cinnamomi. All noninoculated control plants remained healthy, while significant root damage and reduction of dry root weights were observed for inoculated untreated plants. Individually, phosphite and Ca chelate significantly reduced root lesion development of P. cinnamomi compared to the control, with Ca chelate attaining superior results to phosphite at the same concentration. In combination, Ca chelate + phosphite had the largest reduction in root lesion development in both plant species; however, this result has not yet been replicated but did reflect previous in vitro results. The Zn chelate applications were not effective. Ca chelate has the potential to be developed as a fungicide to control Phytophthora species.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Harry Butler Institute
Centre for Phytophthora Science and Management
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Copyright: © 2022 The Authors.
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