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Evaluating resistant brassica trap crops to manage Heterodera schachtii (Schmidt) infestations in eastern England

Wright, Alistair JD, Back, Matthew A, Stevens, Mark, Sparkes, Debbie L
Pest management science 2019 v.75 no.2 pp. 438-443
Brassica, Heterodera schachtii, beets, cultivars, cyst nematodes, economic sustainability, field experimentation, hatching, hosts, juveniles, pest management, planting, radishes, sugar beet, trap crops, England
BACKGROUND: The beet cyst nematode (BCN), Heterodera schachtii Schmidt, is a plant parasitic nematode that causes severe yield losses in sugar beet. Resistant brassicas (radish and mustard) have been bred to be planted after harvest of the main crop, for example a cereal, and encourage BCN juvenile hatching. The resistant plants stimulate juvenile hatching but are not suitable hosts. Juveniles are unable to complete their lifecycle and thus populations are lowered. This research aimed to investigate the effectiveness of a range of brassicas in terms of BCN control when grown in infested fields in eastern England. RESULTS: Experiments used four different radish cultivars, which differed in their resistance to BCN, and one resistant mustard variety. Field experiments were sown in early September in 2016 and 2017. Significant reductions in BCN populations were found only following resistant mustard and the radish with the greatest resistance level. CONCLUSIONS: Further research is needed to understand how best to utilize brassicas and whether they are economically viable when alternative management options for BCN are available. Time of planting may be crucial to fully achieve their BCN‐reducing potential. © 2018 Society of Chemical Industry