Main content area

Fusarium wilt of watermelon: Towards sustainable management of a re-emerging plant disease

Everts, Kathryne L., Himmelstein, Jennifer C.
Crop protection 2015 v.73 pp. 93-99
Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum, Fusarium wilt, biological control, chemical control, disease control, emerging diseases, fumigation, germplasm, human population, methyl bromide, microorganisms, population density, public research, races, rootstocks, secondary metabolites, suppressive soils, virulence, watermelons
Changes in watermelon production practices throughout the world such as the reduction in fumigation with methyl bromide, increasing human population density, which reduces rotational land availability, and the spread of more virulent forms of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. niveum, have led to a resurgence in Fusarium wilt. Public research on Fusarium wilt management practices has focused on grafting, the identification of new sources for resistant rootstock germplasm, chemical control, improved understanding of suppressive soils, cover crop-induced suppression, impact of plant secondary metabolites on FON, and the role of biological control microbes in disease suppression. Additional research on rapid identification techniques for FON and economical methods for field level identification of FON races will improve management of this reemerging disease.