Efficacy of Biorational Products for Managing Diseases of Tomato in Greenhouse Production


Gray mold (Botrytis cinerea), late blight (Phytophthora infestans), powdery mildew (Leveillula taurica), pith necrosis (Pseudomonas corrugata), and bacterial canker (Clavibacter michiganensis) are major diseases that affect tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) in greenhouse production in Mexico. Management of these diseases depends heavily on chemical control, with up to 24 fungicide applications required in a single season to control fungal diseases, thus ensuring a harvestable crop. While disease chemical control is a mainstay practice in the region, its frequent use increases the production costs, likelihood of pathogen-resistance development, and negative environmental impact. Due to this, there is a need for alternative practices that minimize such effects and increase profits for tomato growers. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of biorational products in the control of these diseases in greenhouse production. Four different treatments, including soil application of Bacillus spp. or B. subtilis and foliar application of Reynoutria sachalinensis, Melaleuca alternifolia, harpin αβ proteins, or bee honey were evaluated and compared to a conventional foliar management program (control) in a commercial production greenhouse in Central Mexico in 2016 and 2017. Disease incidence was measured at periodic intervals for six months and used to calculate the area under the disease progress curve (AUDPC). Overall, the analysis of the AUDPC showed that all treatments were more effective than the conventional program in controlling most of the examined diseases. The tested products were effective in reducing the intensity of powdery mildew and gray mold, but not that of bacterial canker, late blight, and pith necrosis. Application of these products constitutes a disease management alternative that represents cost-saving to tomato growers of about 2500 U.S. dollars per production cycle ha−1, in addition to having less negative impact on the environment. The products tested in this study have the potential to be incorporated in an integrated program for management of the examined diseases in tomato in this region.



Solanum lycopersicum, integrated disease management, plant extracts, defense inducers, incidence, AUDPC


Esquivel-Cervantes, L.F.; Tlapal-Bolaños, B.; Tovar-Pedraza, J.M.; Pérez-Hernández, O.; Leyva-Mir, S.G.; Camacho-Tapia, M. Efficacy of Biorational Products for Managing Diseases of Tomato in Greenhouse Production. Plants 2022, 11, 1638. https://doi.org/10.3390/ plants11131638
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