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Relationship Between Cereal Root-Knot Nematode Meloidogyne Naasi and Growth and Grain Yield of Spring Barley

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Yield of spring barley was reduced by increasing nematode population density in a field trial with cv. Sabarlis on Meloidigyne naasi infested land. A series of significant linear regression coefficients relating nematode population density, host symptoms and barley growth and yield was obtained. Grain yield was reduced by 3.5% for every 10 juveniles/g soil reaching 50% loss at 150 juveniles/g soil. Fertile ear production was the major but not sole yield component affected. The field trial indicated an equilibrium density of approximately 40 juveniles/g soil for the nematode. A glasshouse experimental confirmed the field trial results. Yield loss in barley could be expected at small preplant densities with economically significant loss at initial densities greater than 20 juveniles/g soil. In pots, aldicarb at 5.6 kg a.i./ha prevented yield loss at 98 juveniles/g soil whereas yield was not increased by aldicarb on uninoculated pots. Treatment of field plots with aldicarb resulted neither in heavier yields nor smaller final population densities possibly due to poor incorporation and a dry season. At present lack of survey data precludes an assessment of the economic importance of M. naasi in Britain. However, in Wales changed cropping patterns have resulted in increased field populations of this nematode.

Affiliations: 1: Welsh Plant Breeding Station, Aberystwyth, U.K.


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