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Response of two Citrullus amarus accessions to isolates of three species of Meloidogyne and their graft compatibility with watermelon

García-Mendívil, Helio A., Munera, Maria, Giné, Ariadna, Escudero, Nuria, Picó, Maria Belén, Gisbert, Carmina, Sorribas, Francisco Javier
Crop protection 2019
Citrullus, Meloidogyne arenaria, Meloidogyne incognita, Meloidogyne javanica, color, egg masses, eggs, firmness, fruit quality, graft compatibility, greenhouse experimentation, growth chambers, hydroponics, juveniles, pH, plastic greenhouses, root-knot nematodes, rootstocks, sand, soil, total soluble solids, watermelons
The response of two Citrullus amarus accessions, BGV0005164 and BGV0005167, was assessed against different Meloidogyne arenaria, Meloidogyne incognita, and Meloidogyne javanica isolates in pot experiments and against Meloidogyne incognita in plastic greenhouse. In the pot experiments, plants were inoculated with a second-stage juvenile per cm3 of sterile sand and maintained in a growth chamber at 25 °C for 50 days. The watermelon cv. Sugar Baby was included as a susceptible control for comparison. At the end of the experiments, the number of egg masses and eggs per plant was determined, and the reproduction index was calculated as the percentage of the number of eggs produced in the C. amarus accessions with regard to that produced in the susceptible cv. Sugar Baby. In the plastic greenhouse experiment, the ungrafted watermelon cv. Sugar Baby and watermelons grafted onto each of the C. amarus accessions and onto the watermelon rootstock cv. Robusta were cultivated from May to August 2016 in plots with nematode densities from 46 to 1392 J2 per 250 cm3 of soil at transplantation. At the end of the experiment, the galling index and the number of eggs per plant were determined, and the reproduction index was calculated. Additionally, the compatibility of the two accessions with the watermelon cv. Sugar Baby and the effect on fruit quality (weight, size, shape, firmness, pH, total soluble solids, and flesh color) were assessed under a hydroponic system in a greenhouse. The commercial rootstocks cv. Cobalt and cv. Robusta were also included. All the Meloidogyne isolates produced less egg masses and eggs per plant on the accessions than on Sugar Baby. Both accessions performed as resistant against M. arenaria, and from highly to moderately resistant to M. incognita and M. javanica in pot experiments. In the plastic greenhouse experiment, both C. amarus accessions performed as resistant to M. incognita. Both C. amarus accessions were compatible with the watermelon cv. Sugar Baby, but only the BGV0005167 accession did not influence the fruit quality. Then, the BGV0005167 accession is a promising rootstock for managing the three tropical root-knot nematode species without influencing watermelon fruit quality.