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Repellency of ginger oil to Bemisia argentifolii (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) on tomato

Zhang, W., McAuslane, H.J., Schuster, D.J.
Journal of economic entomology 2004 v.97 no.4 pp. 1310-1318
Zingiber officinale, chemical concentration, Solanum lycopersicum var. lycopersicum, insect repellents, dose response, oviposition, dipping, Bemisia argentifolii, essential oils, spraying, olfactometers
The whitefly Bemisia argentifolii Bellows & Perring is an economically important pest of tomatoes, Lycopersicon esculentum Mill., inducing an irregular ripening disorder of fruit and transmitting plant pathogenic viruses. With the goal of investigating ginger oil as a protectant for tomato plants, we tested the effects of concentration of ginger oil and application methods on repellency to whitefly in a vertical still-air olfactometer. In choice and no-choice experiments conducted in a greenhouse, we evaluated whether ginger oil would protect tomato seedlings from whitefly settling and oviposition. Ginger oil repelled whitefly adults in the vertical olfactometer. The repellency of ginger oil was attributed to its odor, effective at the concentrations used over a distance of 1-2 mm. Tomato leaf disks dipped in ginger oil repelled whiteflies at concentrations of 0.5, 0.75, and 1%, but not at concentrations <0.5%, in a dose-response experiment conducted in the olfactometer. Repellency increased with increasing ginger oil concentration when leaf disks were dipped in ginger oil but not when ginger oil was sprayed onto the leaf disks. Higher quantities of monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes were deposited on leaf disks dipped in ginger oil than on sprayed leaf disks according to gas chromatographic quantification. In the greenhouse, both choice and no-choice tests were conducted with tomato seedlings dipped in 0.25% ginger oil solution or 2% Tween 20, as treatment and control, respectively. In the choice test, 35-42% fewer whitefly adults settled and 37% fewer eggs were laid during the 24-h exposure period on tomato plants dipped in ginger oil solution than on plants dipped in 2% Tween 20. In the no-choice test, 10.2-16.7% fewer whiteflies settled on treated plants compared with control plants but no significant differences were detected in the number of eggs laid. Higher concentrations of ginger oil could not be used without causing severe wilting of tomato leaves. Ginger oil has potential as a protectant of tomato seedlings against B. argentifolii, but issues of phytotoxicity and coverage need to be addressed.