Relationship Between Meloidogyne hapla Density and Damage to Carrots in Organic Soils


  • T. C. Vrain


Field and growth chamber experiments were conducted to determine the effect of five initial densities (Pi - 20 - 240/100 cm³ soil) of Meloidogyne hapla on carrot development and yield of storage roots at maturity. Carrots growing in infested and noninfested organic soil were harvested after 15, 29, 44, 59, and 106 days of growth in controlled environment chambers and after l l 0 days in field plots. Nematodes affected weight of roots and foliage, weight and length of the storage portion of tap roots, and induced malformations (forking), galling, and hairiness of tap roots. In most cases the data could not be represented satisfactorily by the exponential model of Seinhorst: y = m + (l-m) Z^(P-t). In growth chambers the weight of mature storage roots was not correlated to initial nematode density, but there was a significant negative correlation between weight of storage roots and initial nematode density in field plots. Tolerance levels were calculated as points where the regression lines reached the growth level on noninoculated plants. The tolerance levels of foliage were higher than those of roots, and increased with age of plants. The tolerance level of marketable weight in field plots, average crop value, and a hypothetical control cost function are used to discuss the possibility of optimizing chemical control of root-knot nematode in organic soils. Key words: root-knot nematode, population dynamics, tolerance levels, damage function.