Management strategies for potato early dying complex in Southern Alberta

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Robertson, Colby James
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Arts and Science
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Lethbridge, Alta. : Universtiy of Lethbridge, Department of Biological Sciences
Alberta potato production expanded in acres and processing recently. Production faces a yield barrier identified as potato early dying disease complex, involving soil- borne Verticillium dahliae and Pratylenchus penetrans pathogens. To address this barrier, soil treatments of Elatus® fungicide, Velum Prime® nematicide, and Pic Plus® fumigant were evaluated in commercial potato fields growing cultivar Russet Burbank. Reduced soil disturbance using a bed freshener was also investigated. Verticillium spp. and Pratylenchus spp. were morphologically identified and quantified. In-field tuber samples were assessed for yield and quality according to industry standards. Soil microbial communities were characterized using metagenomic techniques. Three site-years of results showed soil pathogen levels declined and recovered in the same years. Soil applied chemicals significantly increased potato yield with responses dependent on soil pathogen levels. The most efficacious fumigation included bed freshening. Soil microbial communities were not significantly affected by soil treatments in the short-term but longer study is recommended.
potato , plant pathology , soil science , soil microbiome , agriculture , agronomy , Verticillium , Pratylenchus , Potatoes -- Disease and pest resistence , Potatoes -- Diseases and pests -- Control , Potatoes -- Field experiments -- Alberta, Southern , Soilborn plant diseases -- Control , Soilborn plant pathogens -- Control , Soil fumigation , Dissertations, Academic