Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

’Biofumigants’ to help beat the wilt

15.09.2003


Poor farmers in developing countries could soon be using a range of ’biofumigant’ plants to help increase tropical vegetable yields.



CSIRO is part of a research team from Australia and the Philippines which has found that brassica species such as radish, mustard or broccoli can be used to help reduce yield losses from Bacterial Wilt - the major pathogen of vegetables in tropical farming.

"Brassicas contain compounds that suppress pests and pathogens, principally isothiocyanates (ITCs)," says CSIRO Plant Industry researcher, Dr John Kirkegaard.


"When ITCs are released by manuring, soil-borne pests and pathogens are suppressed and yields of solanaceous vegetables such as potatoes, tomatoes and eggplants can be increased by up to 40 per cent. The effect is known as ’biofumigation’."

The project has already evaluated brassica species and management techniques with the aim of maximising the biofumigant effect. Current field trials in the Philippines and in North Queensland are examining ways of making biofumigation practical and effective for developing countries.

Using brassicas to manage soil-borne pests is not new - there are many previous reports of disease suppression - but new insights and techniques to measure the processes involved in the release of chemicals in soil has provided opportunities to enhance the reliability of the effect.

"The project builds on that research and is making it practical for small-scale farmers around the world," Dr Kirkegaard says.

"There are economic and social benefits for small-scale farmers, as improved crop yields lead to increased incomes. There are also a range of environmental and health benefits, as a result of reduced reliance on toxic fumigants and synthetic pesticides.

"The next stage of the project seeks farmer involvement to integrate biofumigation into the cropping system, using farming networks throughout South-East Asia and the Pacific."

The team includes researchers from CSIRO Plant Industry, the Queensland Department of Primary Industry and the Philippines National Crop Protection Centre. The project is funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR).

More information
Dr John Kirkegaard, CSIRO Plant Industry, 02 6246 5095
Email: john.kirkegaard@csiro.au

Bill Stephens | CSIRO
Further information:
http://www.csiro.au/index.asp?type=mediaRelease&id=Prbiofumigants

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Back to Nature: Palm oil plantations are being turned back into protected rainforest
21.03.2019 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.

nachricht The inner struggle of the evening primrose: Chloroplasts are caught up in an evolutionary arms race
14.03.2019 | Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Pflanzenphysiologie

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The taming of the light screw

DESY and MPSD scientists create high-order harmonics from solids with controlled polarization states, taking advantage of both crystal symmetry and attosecond electronic dynamics. The newly demonstrated technique might find intriguing applications in petahertz electronics and for spectroscopic studies of novel quantum materials.

The nonlinear process of high-order harmonic generation (HHG) in gases is one of the cornerstones of attosecond science (an attosecond is a billionth of a...

Im Focus: Magnetic micro-boats

Nano- and microtechnology are promising candidates not only for medical applications such as drug delivery but also for the creation of little robots or flexible integrated sensors. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) have created magnetic microparticles, with a newly developed method, that could pave the way for building micro-motors or guiding drugs in the human body to a target, like a tumor. The preparation of such structures as well as their remote-control can be regulated using magnetic fields and therefore can find application in an array of domains.

The magnetic properties of a material control how this material responds to the presence of a magnetic field. Iron oxide is the main component of rust but also...

Im Focus: Self-healing coating made of corn starch makes small scratches disappear through heat

Due to the special arrangement of its molecules, a new coating made of corn starch is able to repair small scratches by itself through heat: The cross-linking via ring-shaped molecules makes the material mobile, so that it compensates for the scratches and these disappear again.

Superficial micro-scratches on the car body or on other high-gloss surfaces are harmless, but annoying. Especially in the luxury segment such surfaces are...

Im Focus: Stellar cartography

The Potsdam Echelle Polarimetric and Spectroscopic Instrument (PEPSI) at the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) in Arizona released its first image of the surface magnetic field of another star. In a paper in the European journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, the PEPSI team presents a Zeeman- Doppler-Image of the surface of the magnetically active star II Pegasi.

A special technique allows astronomers to resolve the surfaces of faraway stars. Those are otherwise only seen as point sources, even in the largest telescopes...

Im Focus: Heading towards a tsunami of light

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have proposed a way to create a completely new source of radiation. Ultra-intense light pulses consist of the motion of a single wave and can be described as a tsunami of light. The strong wave can be used to study interactions between matter and light in a unique way. Their research is now published in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

"This source of radiation lets us look at reality through a new angle - it is like twisting a mirror and discovering something completely different," says...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Modelica Conference with 330 visitors from 21 countries at OTH Regensburg

11.03.2019 | Event News

Selection Completed: 580 Young Scientists from 88 Countries at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting

01.03.2019 | Event News

LightMAT 2019 – 3rd International Conference on Light Materials – Science and Technology

28.02.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Bacteria may travel thousands of miles through the air globally

25.03.2019 | Life Sciences

Key evidence associating hydrophobicity with effective acid catalysis

25.03.2019 | Life Sciences

Drug diversity in bacteria

25.03.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>